Sunday, February 28, 2010

Project 365, Week 9

Almost before it started, February is coming to a close.  We welcome March for the warmer days with the hope of the occasional WARM day here and there! 

February 21
I actually didn't get a picture today but I didn't think a substitute of Aiden's noggin from the day before would be a bad thing.

February 22
We went out to our favorite breakfast place down the street.  The girls always order the Mickey Mouse pancake.
February 23
Admittedly a little redneck, the girls had fun getting themselves up on the cab of daddy's pick-up truck where they played with dolls and read.
February 24
Avery had to do a photoshoot with her bear because "he was turning five years old".
February 25
This picture made me laugh when I downloaded it.  I was taking it because Aiden was being so big playing with his sisters at the library on this rainy the time it wasn't even noteworthy to me that Amanda was there in her princess gown....just another day in this wonderful craziness I call my life.
February 26
This is my office, where I was working much of the week.  We had a large cell phone deal that had been planned to happen this week, so at least I was expecting it.
February 27
We had a beautiful drive down to my SIL Sarah's house.
We got to watch my nephew play basketball and then we went back to their house for lunch and hanging out.  It was so good to be together with no'd been a while.
Later, after church, we went to my sister's house for pizza.  These three year-olds are quite the pair...this is Trevor posing.  "Auntie, let me see!"
There are so many great Projects at Sara's blog...head on over.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Hands On Fun

This week at I Heart Faces, the theme is Hands On Fun.  I think hands are a fun thing to shoot because even though you cannot see a face, still there is often clear emotion being conveyed.  I've posted my entry on my photography blog here, but I couldn't help but think of this picture that my sister took.  It could not be categorized as "fun" but it was amazing, wonderful, life-changing, dramatic, God-fearing, incredible, awe-inspiring.

Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.
I Chronicles 29:12

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Project 365, Week 8

Valentine's Day kicked off this week, and what better way to start.  I know that "holiday" gets a bad rap, but I think it should be celebrated with gusto, like all the others.  And so we did.  We hosted a Murder Mystery dinner and had a blast.  The kids were gone all day so Shaun and I got some time to ourselves and I had plenty of time to prepare.

It snowed a few times, enough that Shaun had to take the plow out a couple times.  Conveniently, he was able to do it on his scheduled time off from playing tax man.  We got a nice visit from some friends and spent time with my childhood friend, always a treat.

We're thrilled with the mild temps and the sunshine!

February 14
Dressed for our roles as butchers in the mystery.

February 15
This is my view of Aiden much of the time.
February 16
Since it was snowy out, I took Amanda to gymnastics instead of Laryssa.  Avery and I had fun watching her, though Avery was anxious to join in.  Her little compact body is very strong and her favorites are the balance beam and "the pit".
While the girls were at gymnastics, the boys went out plowing.  It was the first father-son "man" activity and both boys seemed pleased, especially Aiden who discovered that plowing includes a stop at Dunkin Donuts.  Shaun fed him munchkins!   I know...I didn't approve either, but...he's the dad!  (sorry about the blown out photo...I grabbed my camera and just pressed the button without making adjustments).
February 17
Sisters...already sharing (and fighting over) clothes.  Love those faces!
February 18
My friend was in town from PA so we got to help celebrate her oldest's 2nd birthday.  The girls had kids to play with, Aiden had willing arms to hold him and I got to take pictures and talk with adults.  Perfect.
February 19
A coming of age thing...Aiden's first time sitting up in the shopping cart.  Amazingly, he knew just what to do and immediately got started knawing on the handle.  Ewww.  Yes, they make special cart-insert things, but I'll just be honest, I'm not the kind of mom who deals with carrying that around and actually using it.
February 20
Muddy feet!  That is thrilling to me because it means a) there were puddles in place of icy patches and b) it was (arguably) warm enough for Amanda to play in it.  The fact that her shoes are on the wrong feet?  Hardly noteworthy.  Still happens 9 out of 10 times.

So, what was your week like? Thanks for hosting this project, Sara!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Little Hands at Work

A gift of matching aprons was enough of an excuse for us to make cookies together.  Yummy, easy shortbread cookies with sprinkles abounding.

For we are God's workmanship,
created in Christ Jesus to do good works,
which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Ephesians 4:10

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Berry Careful

The other night we were watching the Olympics, specifically the couples skating.  It was the first time the girls had seen it.  Immediately Avery was exclaiming over the "purple, sparkly" outfits they were wearing and trying to get her daddy to choose which one he liked the best.

As the first skaters were on the ice, and they were both watching, Amanda said, "the prince lifted her up like this (arms straight up in the air to demonstrate) and that was not bein' berry careful".  Each 'trick' the skaters did, both girls would say, "that's not very safe!" or "they were not being careful!"  It was funny (and then towards the end of the second couple, a bit annoying) and hardly the reaction we were expecting.

These pictures have nothing to do with that story...they are from our very own performance we had a couple weeks ago.  After bath put on some dance or dress-up clothes, tune the TV to some classical music and its an instant show.

Let them praise His name in chorus and choir and with the [single or group] dance;
 let them sing praises to Him with the tambourine and lyre!
Psalm 149:3

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Murder Mystery Dinner

This Valentine's Day we hosted what I think is our 7th Annual Murder Mystery dinner.  We've had more or less the same crew for most of that time, so by now everyone knows the drill and has gotten comfortable.  Our friends know how to rock a party!  We had a blast laughing, eating, trying to pronounce French words, solving the mystery, eating some more and laughing.

Bethany ~ the winemaker (she even made her own labels)
Chris ~ boules player (slovenly in appearance)

Colombo ~ the Inspector
Amy ~ flower seller (elderly, crazy)
Connie ~ part time teacher, mother of six, the miller's wife
Eric ~ the miller (owns the local flour mill)
Laryssa ~ the barman's daughter (town gossip)
Nathan ~ postman and barman
Micah ~ the baker
Sienna ~ the baker's wife
Shaun ~ the butcher
Lisa ~ the butcher's wife
After all the guests arrived and introduced themselves, we sat down to begin our four course meal and our four rounds of the mystery theater.  Here was our first course, which got good reviews.

Gorgonzola Linguine with Toasted Walnuts

8 ounces uncooked linguine
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 dry white wine or chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

Boil pasta.  Cook walnuts in ungreased skillet over medium-low heat 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently until browning begins, the stirring constantly until golden and fragrant.  Set aside.

Peel and finely chop garlic, cook in butter, stirring occasionally until golden.

Stir the whipping cream, wine and salt into the skillet with the garlic.  Cook about 6 minutes, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and slightly thickened.  Remove from heat, stir in the cheese until melted.

Drain linguine and place in large bowl.  Pour the sauce over and stir until linguine is well coated.  Sprinkle with the toasted walnuts.
For the record, this year Eric committed the crime and we think he has always been "it".  For sure the last three years, so now we are beginning to wonder. :)  We ordered the mystery online using Host-Party.  It was a fairly well-written story and they made it very easy to host.

Just as lotions and fragrance give delight,
a sweet friendship refreshes the soul
Proverbs 27:9

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Project 365, Week 7

Happy Valentine's Day!

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.
Romans 12:10

This was a great week, although I will say that every week of the year.  I just don't believe in "bad days, weeks, years, etc".  Bad things happen but God is unwaveringly good and his blessings can always be found.

Shaun worked less, more people were healthy than not and we had the opportunity to do lots of fun things.  The snow that affected so much of the country was only a couple inches here and since I am not a skier, that goes in the 'good things' category.

Have a great day with your Valentine.

February 7
Super Bowl Sunday.  We had a nice quiet morning as a family, then we went to see Great Grandpa and then up the road to my sister Bethany's house where most of my family was gathered.  We watched  the Christian comedian Tim Hawkins on DVD.  Have you seen him?  If not, you must youtube some of his work...too funny.

Later that evening, we went to our friends the Sharps house.  They have a big, beautiful house that was made to host parties such as this.  The food was abundant and delicious.  Our hostess, Connie is great with kids and is not afraid to make a mess while having amount of beads or glitter scares her.  She helped the kids make noisemakers and they did a parade for our very own half-time show.  Amanda was the leader (I know there's a term for that person).
February 8
We kicked off our ladies bible study group.  We're doing Beth Moore's Esther and I'm so excited!  Excited to see what God wants to teach me and excited to get to know these beautiful ladies better.
February 9
Avery worked long and hard on her Valentines for our family.
February 10
We were braced for THE storm of year and thankfully we did not get any where near the 8-12 in they were calling for. 
February 11
It was a full day and ended with these beautiful, yummy! cookies from a friend.
February 12
We have lots of doorways in our house and the layout allows for two different circles.  Perfect for playing chase and peek-a-boo.  By nature I'm not as playful as I'd like to be, but today the girls and I had fun running after each other, laughing and screaming like...well...girls.  :)
February 13
Since the kids were away, we decided to take full advantage.  We ran a few errands then sat down to a nice quiet dinner and interruptions, no potty trips, no spilled was nice

Check out Sara's project and all the others...we've got quite a group this year!