Saturday, December 24, 2011

Neighborhood Nativity

For the past several years, our neighborhoood has put on a live nativity performance.  The mom's serve Christmas cookies, hot cocoa and then everyone goes caroling around the are towed in a trailer behind a golf cart, of course! This is our 1st Christmas here, so it was all new to us.  Miss Paula asked if my boys wanted to be the Shepherd and a sheep, and much to my surprise (Bryce does NOT like to dress in costume!) they said yes!

The Wisemen

Joseph and Mary 
 The girls choir

 The Angel, Shepherd & sheep!

They did a beautiful job telling the story of Jesus' birth.  They sang a few songs and then at the end, the whole crowd sang Happy Birthday to Jesus.  It was so sweet and very touching to see everyone involved.  I'm very proud of our little children and our neigbhorhood for making this a tradition!  Bryce & Drew are already talking about next year!
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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Spreading Christmas Joy

The boys and I get 18 days off for our Christmas break.  We are SO excited to spend time together without the rush of school, homework, jobs, etc!

One day this week we baked a bunch of different Christmas goodies.

And delivered them to our neighbors on the golf cart.

The boys loved running up to each house, ringing the bell and saying, "Merry Christmas...we're glad you're our neighbors!"  They thought it was much more fun than trick-or-treating!!!  I think we'll make this an annual tradition.

Merry CHRISTmas everyone!

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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Operation Christmas Child

Bryce & Drew were SO excited to participate in Operation Christmas Child this year.  They each chose to shop for boys in the age 5-7 category and both made very thoughtful and selective choices to fill up their shoeboxes.  They commented that "This was one of their best days ever!" 
Bryce & Drew helped to load up the 157 shoeboxes that our church had collected.  Their smiles and enthusiasm were priceless!

My children have such a wonderful life - they are blessed with the love of so many and have so many nice things. It makes me very proud to see their desire to serve and help those that don't have as much!  I'm thankful they understand what CHRISTmas is all about!
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Monday, October 24, 2011


All I have to say is....I'm SO GLAD we got family portraits done when we did.  One of my children's smile looks DRASTICALLY different! 


For the record, the "toothless count" in our house is:

Drew = 4
Bryce = 0

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

My Little Monkeys!

Thank you God for 2 healthy, sweet, kind-hearted, thoughtful boys.  I am so blessed to be their Mommy.

I just love my little monkeys!!!

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Yummy Pretzel Treats

My little chefs LOVE to help me make these.  No measuring necessary.  Just 3 easy steps!  And 3 yummy variations!

Courtesy: Family Fun

Courtesy: Steamy Kitchen


Rolos (unwrapped)
M & M's (plain, pretzel, peanut...whatever floats your boat!)


Hershey Kisses or Hugs (unwrapped)
M & M's


Pecans (or almonds, walnuts, etc)

Preheat oven to 350
Lay pretzels out on baking sheet.  Place chocolate on top.  Bake 3-4 min just until the chocolate begins to soften.  DON'T let it melt completely.  Take out of oven and top with M & M.  Eat warm or place in fridge to set up.

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Monday, October 10, 2011

Pasta Fagioli

This is a hearty Italian soup, healthy and high in fiber.  My boys LOVED it!  Will definitely make this again.

Pasta Fagioli (Pasta and Beans)
Source: Skinny

• 1 tbs olive oil

• 1/2 onion
• 3 cloves garlic, chopped
• 1 celery stalk, chopped
• 1 carrot, finely chopped
• 1 15 oz can cannellini beans
• 15 oz can tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes
• 1 large bay leaf
• 1 tbsp basil
• 1 tbsp parsley
• 1 tsp oregano
• 2 (14 oz each) cans fat free chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegetarians)
• 2 cups water
• salt and pepper to taste
• 1-1/2 cups (6 oz) dry Ditalini pasta or other small pasta
• Grated Parmigiano or Romano (optional)

In a deep pot, saute onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat.
Add the can of tomato sauce, celery, carrots, chicken broth, basil, bay leaf, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper. Add 1 cup water and bring to slow boil. Let simmer for 20 minutes stirring occasionally. Add pasta and cook uncovered until pasta is al dente, according to package. Top with cheese.

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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Family Portraits

Here's a few of our favorite shots from our family portrait session this weekend.  Jae, with JaeBelle Photography is AWESOME!  She is so great to work with.  Very fun & silly with the kids.  She kept Bryce & Drew smiling, laughing and happy for almost 3 hours!  That's AMAZING!!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Everything Bran Muffins

We are loving these new healthy, bran muffins.  The boys gobble them up and don't even stop to ask what the orange things are (shredded carrots!)  Works for me!

Everything Bran Muffins

Makes 15-18 muffins
Source:  Savory Sweet Life

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup ground flax seed
3/4 cup oat bran
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup skim milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup applesauce
2 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts, pecans, or almonds
*optional – substitute 1 cup of shredded carrots for shredded zucchini


Preheat over to 350 degrees. In a medium-large mixing bowl combine flours, oat bran, ground flax seed, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Add eggs, milk, vanilla, and apple sauce to the flour mixture stirring until well combined. Stir in shredded carrots/zucchini, raisins, and chopped walnuts. Scoop batter into prepared (sprayed with non-stick spray) muffin tins until 3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes or until done. Allow to cool for 10 min. inside tin before removing. ENJOY!

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Sunday, September 25, 2011


Until yesterday, our baseball team had gone 0-4.  We've lost 2 players, had our best player out for awhile and lost our head coach.  The majority of our team (including Bryce & Drew) has never even played baseball or t-ball before.  Thankfully, Fall baseball is less competitive and more instructional...a good time for our boys and 1 girl to learn the basics of baseball & good sportsmanship!  We may not be the best, but we have a lot of fun and lots of team spirit!

However, I don't know anyone that doesn't LOVE TO WIN! 

This week, Jimmy took over as The Manager, we got our best player back, and we gained a "pool player"...Bryce & Drew's best buddy, Cole!

AND...WE HAD OUR 1ST WIN!!! SCORE = 13 - 6!

Bryce has really been struggling hitting the ball.  The whole "hand/eye" coordination thing is hard for him.  Last week, he finally started hitting, but he got thrown out at first base each time.  THIS WEEK, he hit  AND got on base...this smile says it all!
Bryce on base!

Drew likes baseball a lot more than Bryce and has been playing consistently well.

Brothers in the outfield!

Our team was SO EXCITED!  They were jumping and screaming.  Coach Jimmy was SO PROUD.  Lots of Mom's were crying because EVERY player had a great game and improved greatly this week.

GO REDS!!!So glad Grandma & Papa Mike were here to see this game!

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Little League

Bryce & Drew started their first season of baseball about 5 weeks ago.  They are on "The Reds" and Jimmy is able to be one of their coaches!  Drew likes baseball but unfortunately, Bryce isn't so crazy about it!

At least they look cute in their uniforms!

Jimmy has always dreamed of coaching his children....he's having a blast!
(Jimmy pitching to Bryce)

(Jimmy pitching to Drew)

(Drew catching!)

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