Archive for the ‘books’ Category

Oatmeal

How do we love thee? Let me count the ways…. apple blueberry oatmeal chocolate orange oatmeal banana cinnamon oatmeal As we have six people in our family, breakfasts need to be filling, nutritious, and cheap. Oatmeal often fits the bill. After a while oatmeal can get a bit boring, so when I saw these three recipes I knew we had to try them out. They are in Jamie’s Food Revolution, which was a gift for Christmas. The recipe actually called for blackberries, but we had blueberries, so it became apple blueberry. It was really good, with a sauteed apple, oat, and honey topping. The chocolate orange oatmeal wasn’t bad. The boys liked it allright, but I guess I’m just not really wanting any big bowl of chocolatey anything first thing in the morning. Our favourite by far was the banana cinnamon. With plenty of cinnamon, and a topping of sliced bananas, coconut, toasted almonds and a drizzle of honey, it was absolutely scrumptious. We will definitely be keeping these fruity oatmeals in our repertoire. The beef and ale stew I made last night was also from this cookbook, and boy was it delicious. Also a keeper, but next time I will have to double the recipe as there were not enough leftovers. Now I need to pick out some more recipes because if they are as good as these last ones, we’re in luck. What is your favourite breakfast?

books, food • Friday, February 5th, 2010 • 12 Comments »

Outdoor Reading

Two days ago, the weather was gorgeous. Well, still a little chilly, but not so cold and windy that we couldn’t play outdoors. I bundled the babe up and took the kids out to play. They all had lots of fun, and I sat on the porch wrapped in a blanket reading a book with a mug of warm milk. I don’t get outdoors enough in the winter. If it’s not too cold, the kids go outside and play, but me, I’m usually inside trying to get laundry, cooking etc. done while they are out. Boy, it felt really good to be out there. Sitting and reading, which doesn’t happen much during the day, with the sunshine beating down on my face. I need to get out more. I know it seems kind of silly that some days I don’t even step outside of the house, but some days I don’t. We homeschool, so I don’t have to take the kids somewhere every day, and with the windchill dropping the temperature by 20 degrees most of the winter, it’s not that brilliant for being outside. That wind can be brutal, one of the downsides of winter in Wyoming. As with the 20 minutes of crafting each day, I am going to try to spend 20 minutes outdoors. I’m not sure if it’ll happen every day, but I’m going to try. I think can do twenty minutes. Other news around here, our big guy did a great job with getting his tooth pulled. I had such traumatic memories of the dentist when I was a kid, but I shouldn’t have even worried. I love our kid’s dentist, and they do too. They had it out in a matter of minutes and he came bounding out with his tooth in a little tooth shaped container. Our kiddo has been wearing a night guard as part of a series of nightguards to hopefully avoid full on braces. Today we got the bad news that he will have to wear real braces for a while as the permanent tooth that was growing in behind the baby one will need some work to be pulled forward. I also found out that my lovely braces will now be on till March 29th. Ugh! They were originally supposed to be off last September, and it has been dragging since then. So, for a little while here, me and my kiddo will both have braces on at the same time. He is really excited at the thought of having blue bands around his brackets. The kids are always disappointed when I refuse to get hot pink ones. I try to explain that that is more for kids, and not mommies. Good news though, our van is fixed. What we thought was going to be a whole transmission problem was just one little part. The dealer was going to charge us $170 to switch it out. Hubby ordered the part for $35 and switched it himself. Yay! That was a huge relief. Don’t forget to leave a comment on yesterday’s post for a chance to win some cloth bags. It’s nice to meet some new people. Hope you guys have a great day. I’ll see you tomorrow.

books, family, home, homeschooling • Friday, January 29th, 2010 • 14 Comments »

Caramel Apple Grunt

The last two days have been gorgeous, weather wise. It’s been in the fifties and sunny, with just a tiny breeze. I’ve thrown open the windows and we’ve all had a little extra fresh air. The kids have spent hours outside playing. I only wish this weather would hold, but here in Wyoming we have several more months of freezing cold weather. We often have one last snowstorm in April, so I can’t get my hopes up yet. Yesterday my daughter wanted to make supper and dessert. She’s five years old and a huge help. Except for the sharp knives and using the oven she pretty much made it all on her own. We had twice baked potatoes with ham and peas. For dessert, she made this gorgeous caramel peach grunt (which the kids have re-named grumble). The recipe came from Rustic Fruit Desserts which is chock full of yummy looking desserts. We will definitely be trying some more. On the 20 minutes a day of crafting front, I have been busy and will have some things to show you soon. I’ve been really enjoying this, it has forced me to get a few little projects done that have been in my head for a while. Do any of you have any projects that have been niggling away in your brain? Something small (or big) that if you just sat down and did it, would make your life a little easier?

books, food • Friday, January 15th, 2010 • 12 Comments »

Tell Me A Story

tell me a story Tell Me A Story is a great book/game/not quite sure what to categorize it as thing we use around here. Since we homeschool, I am always on the lookout for fun creative ways to increase their skills. These are packs of 36 very sturdy, very well illustrated cards. There are many ways to use them. Sometimes I have the kids pick out a group of cards, lay them out in the order they want and then I tell them a story based on the pictures. Other times they grab a stack of them and I have them tell me a story. They are really effective with some of the kiddos that are less confident about making up stories. It gives them pictures to base the story on while still requiring them to come up with the words. We really enjoy them and they are also a great gift. They encourage creativity, which is huge for me. We have Mystery in the Forest, and Little Robot’s Mission. They also make Fairy Tale Mix-Up and Circus Animal’s Adventure. Hope you all are having a great day, cold and dreary here today.

books, family, homeschooling • Wednesday, January 6th, 2010 • 4 Comments »

We Love Pippi

pippi We do a lot of reading here, especially since we homeschool. Sometimes it feels a bit like a chore when we are trying to work on some books while juggling everything else, but one of my goals this year is to live in the moment and really, truly enjoy what we are doing. My daughter and I are reading Pippi Longstocking and we are really loving it. My daughter loves that she lifts her horse up and down off of the porch and she cracks up every time Pippi drinks a cup of coffee. Who wouldn’t love a girl who wears striped knee socks? On the household front, my motivation level is high and yesterday I got all of our Christmas decorations packed away for another year. Next, I’m working on decluttering my closet. Wish me luck.

books • Saturday, January 2nd, 2010 • 7 Comments »

Be Still

be still necklace A new year, so full of possibilities. I must admit, after all the gearing up for Christmas, it is sometimes a bit of a relief when it is finished. I immediately think of the spring coming (though that won’t be for many months here), and new life and warmth. I look forward to celebrating a new year of birthdays starting with all of my boys in the spring. Thoughts of what to plant, where to plant it, and how much to plant. Dreaming of picnics every week in the warm summer sun, having it be warm enough to let my kids play for hours outside every day. We have serious cabin fever by this time of year. It wouldn’t be so bad if it was just cold, but the wind makes it unbearable. I’m not such a huge fan of resolutions, but a new year does make me reflective over how I would like to do things this year. Much of this past year was spent physically, mentally, and emotionally recovering from the previous two years. This year I feel a renewed vigor and enthusiasm, and I am excited for the possibilities. This necklace was a gift from Hubby. It was made by Lisa Leonard and is called Be Still. I absolutely love it, and it is a constant reminder to be still. Being still is sometimes a little difficult with four children. This year, I want to live in the moment more. Enjoy each and every hug, story, cuddle that I am blessed enough to have. I want to enjoy cooking more, so often it’s a matter of just trying to get a nutritious meal on the table while stopping a squabble, holding a fussy babe and trying to think straight and stir at the same time. I want to be outside more, and truly enjoy the beauty of the world around us. To visit family more as time goes by so quickly, and the children are growing at the speed of light. I want to lie in the grass and read stories to my children, make them picnics to have on adventures in the back yard. Then there are the more domestic things that I want to accomplish, such as being more organized, getting some sort of chore system worked out with the abilities of everyone in the family. Being really good about making a big shopping trip and then only going out when we need milk and fresh veg/fruit. I could go on forever as there are probably hundreds of things I want to do, but my overarching goal is to be still, enjoy what God has given me, and make thousands of new, fantastic memories with my family. I sincerely hope that you all have a wonderful new year and are able to accomplish all that you want. Happy New Year!

books, crochet, family, food, gardening, gifts, green, home, homeschooling, kid's art, nature, sewing, thrift store finds, travelling • Friday, January 1st, 2010 • 11 Comments »

Many Moons

moon2This Sunday afternoon we went to a play based on the book Many Moons by James Thurber. It was put on by the little theatre group and was acted out entirely by children. They did such a good job, some of them were quite the naturals. The theatre is a beautiful, old building and our seats on the balcony were great. It was really nice to be able to go and the kids loved that it was done by kids. I hope to be able to frequent more of the plays in town as it’s a really nice time for all of us. Do you all enjoy going to the theatre?

books, family • Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 • 2 Comments »

Birthday Books

birthday booksThanks to a very generous and only slightly belated birthday gift from my brother (Hi! Mark), I was able to order some books that I have been wanting for quite a while. They have been slowly trickling in by mail and I got my last one yesterday. When I have a spare minute, I have been really enjoying flipping through them. At the moment, I have so many projects that I have to get done before Christmas, but as soon as they are done, I can’t wait to sit down and have a good read. What are you reading right now, and loving?

books • Saturday, November 21st, 2009 • 14 Comments »

Meeting Ree, The Pioneer Woman

PWbookI’ve been enjoying Ree Drummond’s blog, The Pioneer Woman, for quite some time. Last night she was doing a book signing for her cookbook in Denver. As that’s only an hour and a half away, hubby, baby, and I took off for an evening of fun. We got there just a few minutes after 7:30pm when the signing was scheduled to start. The book store was packed, and I mean jam packed. Hubby went off to do some browsing and the babe and I got in line. I was next to some great gals and the chatter flowed, it was a good thing because we were all in line together for the next five hours. It was a long time, but it was actually pretty fun. We got to know each other a bit and for several of those hours we were sitting on the stairs, so at least we weren’t standing, which is handy as the babe is 22 pounds. We finally got downstairs and at 12:40am I finally met Ree. She was so sweet, and gorgeous, and she spent a few minutes chatting and signing my cookbook. The babe had been awake the entire time, amazing I know, and had fallen asleep literally less than a minute before meeting Ree. She signed my cookbook and took some pictures and after saying goodbye to my new friends we were off. We pulled in the driveway at 2:45am. It was a long, tiring night, and I would do it all over. I was really pleased that Ree was everything I expected and more, what a sweet gal. This of course is why I haven’t been able to function today, at all. I don’t drink anything with caffeine in it as the babe already doesn’t sleep well. She doesn’t need help staying up, so I have been craving several pots of coffee today. Alas, no caffeine for me, but I definitely see an early bedtime.

books, food • Wednesday, November 4th, 2009 • 13 Comments »

Birthday Goodies

birthday flowersI received some wonderful presents for my birthday, and wanted to share them with you. I got these gorgeous flowers, just perfect to brighten up the kitchen. It makes me smile every time I look at them.birthday bits and bobsSome great new (well, old, really) hankies to add to my collection that I use daily. A beautifully hand crocheted baby bib and some silver baby spoons for the little one, and an old wooden spool which will decorate my studio, one day.how to grow your own food.jpgA new gardening book to hopefully help me figure out what I’m doing.stripey blanket.jpgA pink stripey blanket that is destined to be repurposed as it has a little hole and a couple of stains. I also got two sets of Wee Wonderfuls embroidery patterns, the All Four Seasons Stitchettes, and the All Four Fairy Stitchettes. Last but not least, is a 1- year subscription to the British Country Living magazine, which I’m super, super, super excited about. I had such a great birthday, and got some wonderful things. There is going to be a lot of fun crafting before Christmas and plenty to learn before spring hits with a new garden. Hope you guys are having a great week.

books, gardening, thrift store finds • Tuesday, October 20th, 2009 • 8 Comments »