Tuesday, November 30, 2010

turkey day

We had a very thankful Thanksgiving!  On Thanksgiving Day we got to visit with lots of family...


LuLu, Mary Reese & Baby Caroline [isn't she beautiful?]

We got to roll around on the floor with baby cousins...


Owen adores Baby Leo [but I am not sure the feel is mutual].

We had a craft table where the kids got to decorate their own placemats...


...and make Thankful Books...


Mary Reese took hers seriously.  She worked on them forever!

And of course we had tons of delicious & delightful food...


I am still stuffed thinking about everything I ate!

We hope everyone had a wonderful Turkey Day with family and friends!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

making lemonade

When apple starting coming into season, I started making Fresh Apple Cakes...


It is full of apples, spices & nuts.  It doesn't require a mixer.  It screams fall.  It is delicious & delightful.

A couple of weeks ago when I went to dump one out, half of the cake stayed in the pan...


I am still not sure why.  I had made several of these prior and nothing like this had happened.  Instead of throwing it away, I decided to make a Fresh Apple Cake Trifle...


I took it to work because my family didn't need this monstrosity.  They raved and I laughed.  Then I told them the story of the messed up cake.

It would be a fabulous addition to your Thanksgiving table and needs to be assembled a head of time [which is always a plus in my book].

Fresh Apple Cake
3 c. flour
1 t. salt
1 t. soda
1 t. cinnamon
¼ t. allspice
½ t. nutmeg
3 eggs
2 c. sugar
1 c. canola oil
3 fresh apples, chopped [I used 2 granny smith & 1 honey crisp]
2 t. vanilla
1 c. chopped nuts [I either use walnuts or pecans or sometimes ½ and ½]

Sift together flour, salt, soda, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg.  Beat eggs well.  Add sugar and oil and blend.  Add flour mix, vanilla, apples (one cup at a time) and nuts.  Batter will be stiff...


Spoon into a greased bundt pan.  Bake approximately 1 hour & 20 minutes.

To make it into a trifle...

I made 1 big box of instant vanilla pudding according to package directions.  Then I layered a ⅓ of the cake, ⅓ of the pudding & a ⅓ of a large tub of whipped topping.  Then a generous squirt of caramel sauce.  Repeat the layers 2 more times.  Stick in the refrigerator overnight.

Monday, November 22, 2010


I am thankful for this view outside one of our front windows...


I love all the colors!

I am thankful for all the wonderful teachers my children have...


I am thankful to have the entire week off with my family.

I am thankful that Owen's teachers take the time to do an art project with him...


Jody and I had to trace our hands and send them to school.  When I picked him up...he had made this.

Banks and Mary Reese did a thankful turkey of their own...


Mary Reese's turkey is on the left and Banks is on the right.  [My favorite thankful leaf is on Mary Reese's turkey...she is thankful for MYSELF!]

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Plump & Perky Turkey

Banks had is class play on Thursday.  The play was based on The Plump and Perky Turkey.  ["The people in Squawk Valley were downhearted and depressed.  Thanksgiving was approaching, but without its special guest." All the turkeys have fled town except for one fowl named Pete who responds to a ploy a "model wanted" ad for the local art show. After posing for various sculptors, painters and collage artists, Pete steals off with a turkey made from oatmeal as payment and joins up with his other feathered pals.]

It was super cute as always.  Here is the entire cast...


He was one of the artist.  He disguised his turkey out of soap.  [Did you notice their disguised turkeys decorating the stage?]

A few shots after the big performance...


All the artist...


They made their turkeys out of supds, clay, rope oatmeal, paper and soap.  [Banks did have a beret for dress rehearsal but mysteriously couldn't find it in his bag for the show.]

The turkey costumes were precious [and made by their teacher]...


Can you tell they were excited about their performance?


They were so wild after the play!

Banks and his teacher...


The teachers were dressed up too.  Mrs. Hughes and Mrs. McGrady made these vests with their class...


Banks and his BFF aren't in the same class this year, but they did get to join forces for the play...


Eppes the farmer and Banks the artist.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

turning six

Mary Reese turned six on Friday [at 3:41 pm to be exact].  We celebrated all week long.  We started by having the family [it ends up being 24 of us] over for Debbie's Chicken n Dumplins, Vegetable Soup and Pumpkin Chili.  No birthday at our house would be complete without a Judi Moore cake...


Owen already adores them...


See why we call him Pig Pen?

We ended the party with a few presents...


Barbie's, Spin Art, Target gift certificates, new shoes, make-up and jewelery...what more could a six year old want?

Finally Friday arrived and I surprised her with her favorite breakfast...


Chocolate Chip Waffles with whipped cream.

She was thrilled when she walked into the kitchen.


After breakfast, we did our annual growth mark on the basement door frame...


She has grown 3 inches since her last birthday.

On Thursday, she and I made cupcakes for her to share with her class...


Confetti Cupcakes with pink buttercream icing topped off with some sprinkles!

I took them to school that afternoon for her to share.  They sang Happy Birthday to her...


She got her birthday "spankings" with a flip flop paddle from Ms. Lowery...


Then her table...


...and the other table...


dug in!  She loved sharing her birthday with all her friends from school...


I even let her check out a few hours early!

We ended the night with a birthday dinner at The Brick and a marshmallow roasting session at B.B. Perrins.  It was a big night for my six year old [where did the time go?]!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

veterans day

We enjoyed a nice, quiet Veteran's Day at home soaking in all the beautiful fall weather.  We enjoyed a picnic in the front yard...


Then we raked a huge pile of leaves in the front yard and jumped...


...and jumped some more...


Owen wasn't too sure of the leaf jumping at first...


But it didn't take him too long to warm up to the idea...


Soon he was covered in leaves...


We also had a little school project that was due on Friday...

big al turkey disguise

We had to diguise a turkey so he wouldn't be eaten on Thanksgiving.  Banks picked Big Al as his diguise.  Hope Big Al makes it through Thanksgiving Day!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

wordless wednesday


Monday, November 8, 2010

trick or treat?

Finally on Sunday night, it was time to Trick or Treat!  Our friends the Bibbs invited us over for dinner and trick or treating.  We got dressed up in our costumes...


Mary Reese decided to be Pinkalicious, Owen was Clifford [he HATED the head] and Banks was a baseball player.

We hit our neighbors before heading to the Bibbs...


We ate some delicious dinner before gathering all the ghost and goblins for a group shot...


Some of these children have been trick or treating together all their lives.  We were determined to take a group shot because it has been about 4 years since the last one.  [One of our regular families couldn't join us this year.  One of their twins is battling Aplastic Anemia.  You can follow their journey here.  We missed them and hope they are back with us next year.]

...then we headed out for a little trick or treating...


Do you think we got enough candy?


And being the great mom that I am...


I let them all have Halloween candy [and cheese puffs] for breakfast the next morning!  Hey it does have milk and eggs in it.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

a pumkin carving we went

Mrs. Propst [Banks's teacher last year] invited us to her neighborhood pumpkin carving party the Friday night before Halloween.  The kids were estatic when I told them the plan [They think Mrs. Propst hung the moon and stars].  We loaded up our pumpkins and headed to the party...


Mary Reese drew her design and got started with the carving.  Then they recruited Mrs. Propst to help...


Owen was right there with them [grabbing knives left and right] dying to take part...


[In between grabbing knives out of Owen's hands] We scooped out all our seeds and had full intentions of bringing them home to roast.  I was so sad the next morning when I realized I left my grocery sack of pumpkin guts.


After you finished your jack-o-lantern, you lit it and put it on display...


It was so fun seeing everyone's creation!

Along with their pumpkins, everyone brought food to share.  Their were crockpots full of chilis and soups, all kinds of snacks and desserts galore!  We brought some pumpkin butter over cream cheese with crackers and homemade gingersnaps...


Mary Reese never left Mrs. Propst side all night...


She looks like Mrs. Propst's Mini-Me!  I think she did get a break when Mary Reese joined the rest of the kids on the hayride around the neighborhood.  It was a fun night spent with lots of friends!