Friday, February 29, 2008

Moving on with videos of the girls...

We've been living in a basement for 5 months now, so when we drove by two days ago to see our new house framed we were ecstatic. Apparently it was not nearly so exciting to any of you, so I guess we'll move on :).

Here is Olivia doing high fives with Daddy...

And here is Kathryn saying her books of the Bible - Genesis through Esther

Thursday, February 28, 2008

See, we really are building a house

I know after 5 months, the Babcock's are starting to think we really aren't, and we're just planning to live with them forever :). Yes, it has really been 5 months. I can't believe it either.

So, I'm just a little worried about the ladders that are hanging by a crane over our house. Other than that, it's starting to look good. Brad is supposed to be in touch with the Centex realtor today to give us a new approxomate closing date. Of course we are still holding out hope that we could move in before the baby is born, but we trust everything will work out for the best either way. Because of Brad's crazy work schedule until April 15th, we're not sure how smooth a move would go even if we did get to close beforehand.

Here are some pictures of our crazy girls. Olivia is singing "Day 1" - she just holds up her whole hand since she can't figure out the finger thing :). Kathryn is reading Dad a story - probably Madeline, her favorite for the moment. Kathryn's favorite song right now is "Little Bunny Foo Foo". Olivia loves it too, only she calls it "Bunny Poo Poo". So we walk through Wal-Mart with her saying "Bunny Poo Poo. Sing it." :)

The girls and I are a little bummed this morning. We were supposed to go over to my good friend Alyssa's house for a playdate with little Penny, but our car still isn't out of the shop, so we're stuck at home instead. I guess that means I should clean or something :).

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Sunday, February 24, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

First off, here is a picture of my weekly groceries. I almost didn't post this so you wouldn't see how much junk food we got :). Meijer had some really great deals, that, combined with my coupons were just unbeatable! I was able to take advantage of all these deals this week because I hardly cooked last week and am carrying over most of my meals over from last week. How nice to have this stash! It will really help out for breakfasts and lunches. (and the snacks will all be pretty fun for treats, too :)

5 boxes of cereal
2 - 5lb bags of sugar
3 boxes of Pop-Tarts
2 - 1/2 gallons of apple juice
2 bags of Chex Mix
1 bag of cookie mix
2 Betty Crocker Supreme brownie mixes
8 cans of diced tomatoes
1 box mac & cheese
1 gallon of milk
3 cans Grands biscuits
1 bunch of broccoli
4 Warm Delights :)
2 boxes of Fiber One granola bars
2 lbs of butter
3 lbs of apples (not pictured)
6 Pillsbury pie crusts
10 string cheeses
2 - 8oz packages of cheese
4 boxes of Pop-Secret popcorn

All for $40!!!

Monday: Chicken Pot Pie, broccoli & cheese, fresh fruit

Tuesday: Tacos

Wednesday: Curly Chicken Noodle Soup, Garlic Cheese Biscuits

Thursday: Brad's office orders in on Thursdays now through April 15th, so the girls and I will just snack around and eat leftovers

Friday: Roast, mashed potatoes, green beans, rolls

Saturday: Grilled cheese, fresh fruit, veggies/dip
Be sure to check out Organizing Junkie for more great menus!

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Saturday, February 23, 2008

I'm a Little Teapot.... well, kinda :)

I'm a Little Teapot is just one of Olivia's favorite songs. She loves music, and will come up to me at different times during the day and say a few words of a song, then say "sing it". Here she is saying "Teapot, short, stout"

In other news, I'm officially declaring Kathryn potty trained. She has been 24 hours without an accident, and without me reminding her one single time to go potty! I'm so proud of her! Brad says I got lucky, I think I must just be really good at this potty training thing (ha! ;-). She ran in this morning while I was fixing breakfast and said, "Mom, if you go to the potty then you tan have some n 'm n's, but if you don't, then you tan't have any." Thanks, Kate.

Yesterday I made sausage and eggs for breakfast. She loves sausage, but could live without eggs. She had eaten 2 of the required 5 bites, then said, "Is anybody going to ask me if I'm all done?" to which Brad replied, "I think we're all afraid to." :) These girls...

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

This week all my menus are things that I already have on hand, with the exception of fresh fruits and veggies. Last week was our Sam's trip, so I went about $20 over on my budget - I plan to make up for that this week by "using up" some things that have been sitting on the shelf for a while, and only spending $25 this week in groceries.

Monday - eat at friend's house, taking a salad

Tuesday - chicken pot pie, fresh fruit

Wednesday - tacos

Thursday - curly chicken noodle soup, garlic cheese biscuits

Friday - frozen pizza, veggies/dip, fresh fruit (Brad and the girls are on their own this night :)

Saturday - grill out steaks with the Babcock's, baked potatoes, salad

Curly Chicken Noodle Soup
This is a fast and easy soup recipe that Mom shared with me. The ingredients are things that most everyone stocks in their pantry. It's great to serve to company - just make the soup ahead and add your pasta before you serve it so it doesn't get overdone.

1 lb. chicken breast cut into bite sized pieces
1 lg onion, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 T butter
2 T canola oil
1/4 c flour
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp pepper
3 cans chicken broth
6 oz pasta (I use rotini)

In large saucepan, saute chicken, onion, carrots, and garlic in butter and oil for 5 minutes. Stir in flour, basil, oregano, and pepper until blended. Gradually add broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour. Return to a boil; stir in pasta. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered for 12-15 minutes, or until pasta is cooked.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The Party...

Potty training is off to a good start. Last night and today haven't been so great, but really I didn't expect them to be since she had friends over last night and today, and I've been completely preoccupied with having company. Starting was the key, and now I can check that off my list :).

So on to the fun stuff... Alaina's Valentine's Day party was a blast. She really outdid herself with preperations. She had different stations set up for the kids (there were 18 kids in all!!!): one where they made a bag to carry their Valentine's in, one to put together their own heart shaped pizza, one to color Valentine pictures, and one to decorate cookies. Everything looked so festive and fun - especially the lunch table. Kathryn had a ball, and I could hardly keep her awake on the way home - even with the sugar high :).

Here she is decorating her cookies. They ended up being more full of sprinkles than cookie :)
Olivia wasn't too sure about all the excitement, but she was sure that the cookies were pretty good.
These are Andrew & Alaina's cute little boys, the hosts, Patrick & Calvin
The fancy table with heart shaped everything...
This is Emily. She loved Olivia! She kept giving her hugs and kisses, and she was so sweet.
Kathryn has a sixth sense for picking out the grandma in every group. I don't know how she does it. Here she is with Calvin and Patrick's grandma :)
Our hostess, Alaina.... Thank you so much for such a fun morning!!!

Friday, February 15, 2008

This is what we're doing today

I have so much to do. I am so many posts behind. I'm having 13 people over for supper tonight. But for some unknown reason, I decided to tackle this project today. The time had just come, and I couldn't put it off anymore. I won't be dissapointed if we don't fully succeed today, I just had to start sometime, and today was as good as any. We had SUCH a fun Valentine's Day, and the party at Alaina's was a blast. I WILL post pictures... but it will have to be later :). I also owe you and you phone calls and emails and I WILL get to those SOON! I miss talking to you!!!

No, I'm not training Olivia today too, she's just along for moral support :)

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Sunday, February 10, 2008

The day full of PINK

Valentine's Day happens to be my favorite holiday, not because of the overpriced candy and flowers, but mainly because pink is my favorite color :) - shallow, I know. This year will be extra exciting because the girls were invited to their first ever Valentine's party at their friends Calvin & Patrick's house. Kathryn is beside herself with excitement, asking every day if this is the day for the "birthday party". She and I have been working for the past week making valentines. Seeing my daughter enjoy crafting as much as I do really warms my heart :). She wanted to make them "all by herself" and as hard as it was for me to see her misplacing things, I let her. After about the third one she really got the hang of it and started putting them together a lot better than I thought she would be able to!

The finished product... She was so proud of herself. Every time she would finish one she would turn to me and say, "You never said 'dood job', Mom!!!" :)
Last night Kathryn came running into the bathroom where I was getting ready. She was all out of breath, and she said, "Mom, I have a sensational idea!!! Let's have some TANDY!!!" (candy) WHERE in the world did she learn the word sensational? I don't think I've ever said that word in my life! Crazy, crazy girl... She'll try anything in the world to get candy :)
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Menu Plan Monday

Monday: White Chicken Chili (see below for recipe), tortilla chips/salsa

Tuesday: Beef Stew, Rice

Wednesday: Lasagna, Salad

Thursday: Polish Sausage Soup, Cheddar Bay Bisquits

Friday: Homemade Pizza & Breadsticks (we're having some friends over for dinner and I'll probably ask one family to bring salad and one to bring dessert)

Saturday: Brad said not to plan anything :) :)

This week I'll share the White Chicken Chili recipe. My sister Heidi is the one who introduced us to it, but I think it was originally a Taste of Home chili cookoff winner. It is SO good! Actually, this is my first time to make it, so let's hope it's as good as we remember ;)

White Chicken Chili

4 15oz cans great northern beans
1 medium onion
3 tsp garlic powder
18 oz chopped green chile
4 tsp cumin
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp cayenne pepper powder
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 lbs. bite-size pieces chicken
29 oz chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream (or 1/2 & 1/2)
16 oz sour cream

1 bag tortilla chips
Cook chicken and saute with onion and garlic Before serving add cream and sour cream. Cook about 5 minutes longer.

Crumble tortilla chips in bottom of each bowl before serving.

(These are all the directions that I got. I'm assuming you just throw all the other stuff in the pot :). Heidi, you'll have to add any "secrets" you have in my comments section.)

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


I'm not posting my menu plan this week because mostly I'm carrying over last week's menu. Between eating upstairs with the Babcock's, eating at Mom's, Brad not getting home until too late, and eating a wonderful dinner at Olive Garden with the Falk's, I only cooked two times last week!! As a result, I hardly had to do any shopping this week, so we're going to splurge on Thursday night and make dinner for the Babcock's, Mom & Dad, and Josh & Heidi in honor of Dad's birthday.

Jessica and Rosie both suggested that I share some of my recipes. I'll try to do better at that! I love when people include a new recipe or two with their menu plans! In fact, Amy has linked Emeril's Tortilla Soup recipe on her blog this week, and we will definitely be trying that soon! And of course, Alaina always has great new recipes up on her recipe blog. You can also always search on Organizing Junkie for tons more menu planning and recipe ideas!

Lime Chicken

This recipe came from Brad's Mom, and we absolutely love it! It is so easy to make, and I almost always have the stuff on hand for it. This is one of the girls' favorite meals!

4 Chicken Breasts, salted and peppered - I usually filet mine so they are nice and thin
1/3 Cup Olive Oil
2-3 limes, juiced
1 stick Butter
1 tsp. chives, minced
1 tsp. dill weed

In large frypan, place oil and heat to medium temperature. Add chicken and saute about 4 minutes or until lightly browned. Turn chicken, cover and reduce heat to low. Cook 10 minutes or until fork tender. Remove chicken and keep warm, drain off oil and discard. In same frypan, add lime juice and cook over low heat until juice begins to bubble. Add butter stirring until butter becomes opaque. Stir in chives and dill weed. Spoon sauce over chicken.


One of our Tennessee friends, Marcie, brought this to us when Kathryn was born and we've been making it regularly ever since. Brad and I love it as a cereal, and the girls love it just for a snack. The great thing about it is you just start with the basic recipe, then use your imagination and add whatever you like to it (or whatever you have on hand :)!

4 Cups Oats
1 Cup Sunflower Seeds
1 Cup Unsweetened Coconut
1 Cup Nuts, chopped (I prefer pecans or peanuts, Mom prefers walnuts :)
1 Cup Honey
2/3 Cup Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Peanut Butter
Other ideas: raisins, craisins, chocolate chips, seseme seeds

Bake at 300 for 20 minutes, stir, then bake for another 10 minutes

We take ours out right at 30 minutes because I like mine to be chewy. This is just a crumble kind of granola. You can also make it into bars by pressing it firmly into a 9x13 baker before cooking. It is still a little crumbly, though, so we prefer to just eat it crumbled.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Kathryn Funnies

A taste of my own medicine...

Kathryn: (carrying over pretend food) "Mom, would you like to have a french fry?"
Me: "Oh yes, please!"
Kathryn: "Well, you'll have to eat your chicken first. Do you want some chicken?"
Me: "Yes, thank you" (pretend eating chicken)
Kathryn: "Okay, now you may have your fries."

Practice what you preach...

Olivia: (playing in the bathroom getting out all of the bath toys)
Kathryn: "Olivia, this is a MESS! Do not get out any more toys until you pick some of these UP!!!"

Role confusion...

(on our way home from a shopping outing - last week after our shopping outing we went to Mom and Dad's for the afternoon)
Kathryn: "I think we should go to Mom and Dad's now."
Me: "Where?"
Kathryn: "To Mom and Dad's! You know, to see Nana and PawPaw! Maybe we could eat yunch (lunch) there."

One more role confusion...

(Brad engrossed in the computer)
Kathryn: "Dad, watch this!"
Brad: (no response)
Kathryn: "Untle Bad (Uncle Brad), watch this!"
Brad: (no response)
Kathryn: "Badley Pettes, watch this!!!"
Needless to say, that got his attention :-)

CVS Weekly Deals and Cute Kids ;)

The girls and I just made our weekly CVS run, and came out pretty good this week! After our "big outing" we went to McDonald's and had some double cheeseburgers and fries. This is the second week in a row that we've done that, and I'm thinking that we'll just make that a tradition. After all that we save at CVS, I think we can afford the $3.21 splurge ;-)

CVS Deal:
1 bottle Irish Spring Body Wash
1 bottle Softsoap Body Wash
1 bottle Garnier Fructis Conditioner
5 bottles low dose Aspirin (for Dad ;)
2 tubes of Colgate toothpaste
2 bags of m&m's
1 Maybelline trio eyeshadow

Total before coupons $34.45
-Manufacturers coupons and CVS coupons (8.75)

Total $25.70, and I got $25.43 back in ECBs, so I got all of this for only

And now some pictures of some kids we think are kinda cute...

This is the girls' favorite spot to watch T.V. They get these two little chairs and prop them up on the table, then sit up there to watch! Which, by the way, Kathryn thanks God every night for her T.V. when she says her prayers. If she forgets, as I'm walking out the door she'll say, "I never say thank you for the TV!!!", then we have to start all over again :)

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