Wednesday, May 30, 2012

My Favorite Drink

Hands down, my favorite drink is a Shirley Temple.
When my sisters and I were young, we would go out to the ranch with our dad to feed the cows (but mostly just to play on the hay bales!) Not every time, but often enough, before we headed home, we would drive to town to have a drink at the bar with all the other farmers. My dad would have a Roy Rogers and my sisters and I would get Shirley Temples. We were always excited when they'd give us extra cherries in our drinks!

There are a few variations to the drink but here's how I've enjoyed them!

Add a few ice cubes to your glass
Fill glass with Sprite or 7-Up
Top it off with a splash of Grenidine
Garnish with a couple cherries

Other variations include adding lime juice and using Ginger Ale instead of Sprite. This is a great drink for kids! Or make it an adult beverage by adding 1 oz of vodka to make it a Dirty Shirley.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

If Only My Kids Would....

If only my kids would listen to me!

This is a day to day struggle for me. I'm not sure how many times I've called my parents in tears, or nearly in tears because they (mostly Hunter) will not do what I ask of them. Maybe we've just really hit the Terrible 2s and the Tantrum-ing 3's at the same time. Either way, they know how to push my buttons!

I dread bedtime just about every day that they *actually* take naps. At least when they don't take naps, we don't fight about staying in bed because they are too tired to get out! But then there are those days when they clearly need a nap, so we go back and forth about staying in bed not only at nap time, but again that night at bed time. 

Even simpler things like putting toys away are often challenging for us. It gets done, but occasionally there are tears involved, which I hate! I feel like I have been raising them the wrong way. The most frustrating part about them not listening to me, is that I haven't found a way that works to discipline them. 

Maybe I'm just crazy for thinking that only my kids won't listen to their mom when she asks them to go use the potty, or put their shoes on, or take their coat off, or heaven forbid, eat their food.

Don't get me wrong, I love my boys to death! And they are angels - when they want to be! Despite them not listening to me, they still manage to make me laugh and be silly with them. They just melt my heart. Wouldn't parenting just be a piece of cake if they did though? What's the fun in that?

P.S. Sorry mom for not listening when I was little...I think I just got slapped by Karma...

Monday, May 28, 2012

Our Summer To-Do List

Summer is nearly here (already!)...though we did get spoiled in April with some serious sunshine! Of course with the sunshine comes lots of outside activities! So without further adieu, I present to you, my Summer To-Do List :

Try out fishing
Spend an afternoon by the river throwing rocks
Take the boys to a movie
Make homemade ice cream
Go on bike rides
Throw water balloons
Set up our tent and camp out in the back yard
Run through the sprinklers
Make bird treats
Re-build deck
Play at a park with water activities
Make snowcones
Swim at a water park
Stroll through the farmers market
Feed the ducks
Have a slumber party in the livingroom
Eat ice cream just because
Play with Fireworks
Mini golf
Blow bubbles
Visit the local library
Attend a play at an opera house

Did I mention have fun?

Kile's Bachelorette Cake

This is my favorite cake so far! I volunteered to make Kile's bachelorette cake for her party last Thursday.
And as with any cake, there is always a Hunter story attached.... As I was cutting out the strips for the bow, I asked Hunter to put my candy thermometer down. Instead of just placing in on the counter, he slammed it down on top of my rolling, which caused it to break...There was little shards of glass all over the counter, including the strips I was I had to start over... Luckily it didn't take too long! 
 I had a hard time getting the stripes right...I'm such a perfectionist! I ended up using sugar sheets for them. I hate how they taste, but I just haven't mastered creating black the time it was a charcoal color, my fondant started crumbling...oh the joys!

Golf Themed Groom's Cake

Many of my followers have seen this cake before now on Facebook...I was little to antsy to write a new blog post first! 

This cake took what seemed like FOREVER to do! I had the cake itself made plenty of time in advance, but was still up in the air as to how I was going to decorate it. Once I finished Kile's bachelorette cake, on Wednesday night, I began on the groom's cake. I put it off as long as I could!
The first thing I made to put on the cake was the bride. I'm pretty sure she was the only thing I didn't have to make twice!
 The golfer ended up laying down on the cake, but was originally supposed to be standing. The first guy I made turned out fine, for the most part, except he started cracking everywhere and was HUGE compared to the bride. After trying to fix him, I finally just decided ti start over, but he didn't dry in time to stand on his own, hence the laying down. I almost like it better!

 And GAH! That golf cart was my enemy! Of course it was fine when I finished it. I stored the cake in the oven  (turned off with a big note on it!) so it wouldn't be tempting to touch by *some young boys*. However, when I opened the oven in the morning, the golf cart took it upon itself to fall to pieces. I recreated it, and headed over to the DoubleTree with it. Of course once I got there, it was in shambles. 
I finally got it set back up and when I did, I didn't even want to look at it again! I finished it up at 3:30a Saturday morning, and had the kitchen cleaned and was in bed by 4a - only to have to get up 3 hours later! It was a looong, but memorable day! 

Congratulations Kile and Chris on your wedding!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Trip to Seattle: Day 2 Afternoon

We spent about three and a half hours at the zoo and still didn't see everything - which was okay! By the time 1:30 came around, we had some cranky kids on our hands... They passed out just about immediately once we got them in the car! Short lived though, we had to wake them up twenty minutes later when we arrived at Emilienne's house. Needless to say, the house was locked so we headed over to see Aunt Kile sooner than we had planned.

On the way to ferry, I explained to Hunter that we were going to take our car on a big boat to go see Aunt Kile and (soon-to-be!) Uncle Chris. He response to me was "No! We can't mom! The car can't swim!" Solid point Hunter!
 I was a little surprised by their reactions when we went outside on the ferry. JP (who fears water in quantities bigger than the bath tub) loved it! Hunter just wanted to go back inside.
 He still really enjoyed looking at the water though!
 Hunter insisted he wear his shades - He rocked them!
On the drive from Bremerton to Kile's, the boys practiced singing.
I don't know who is singing him this song, because when I sing it, Mama buys everything...?

My first time at Chuck E Cheese's!

This was JP's FAVORITE ride - if we ever lost sight of him, this is where we'd find him : )
Hunter was just kind of all over the place!
I thought this ride was going to be faster and take him in a complete circle. It didn't. Kind of a let down. But it was fun to watch him!
After all the dinner time play, we took them to a park to wear them out even more!
I figured we better get at least one picture together!
JP loves to swing...but this clearly wasn't the time for it...we stopped him when he started looking nauseous...
....and then took him to the merry-go-round instead! Perry and Chris pushed us super the point that Hunter started looking nauseous!
Perry was able to sneak out of the car on the ferry back to Seattle to snap a couple photos of the city. So pretty! Surprisingly the boys stayed awake for about an hour after we left Poulsbo.
When we arrived back in Seattle, our GPS "Shirley" couldn't find us. She thought we were still in Bainbridge, so we had to navigate downtown Seattle in the dark. A disaster! But we made it home! 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Trip to Seattle: Zoo on Day 2

Day 2 on our vacation was jam-packed with stuff! I have never (at least in my memory) been to a zoo or an aquarium before, so both of those were on our list of things to do while in Seattle. Unfortunately, we were only able to make it to the zoo. I was totally okay with that! 

Here's a few highlights from the zoo!
Let me first say, I packed everything we needed for everyone else but me. I forgot my coat/sweatshirt at Emilienne's house, so I froze in the morning. I sucked it up though....
These penguins were our first stop. JP absolutely loved them!
 These monkeys were up high sleeping with their tails hanging over. Hunter really wanted to check them out so I willingly let him stand on my shoulders to see, and prayed he wouldn't wiggle!
 We saw a few gorillas wandering around.
 Daddy and his boys
 JP loved this little guy! I tried to get him to scratch his head but he just looked at me oddly.
This is a Southern Pudu - also known as the world's smallest deer. Basically the size of a little dog.
 Couldn't go to the zoo without seeing the flamingos!
 Although we never saw any "normal" turtles...I did see these ones!
Big Brother turtle...
 ...Baby Brother turtle....
 ... Daddy turtle...
 ...and I didn't participate! : )
I instead chased the boys around in this tunnel structure. Wore me out!
I'm pretty sure the highlight of my day were these beautiful giraffes! I loved looking at them!
The boys got a rare up close sighting of the lioness. She walked over to the window just as we got there and laid down in front. The zookeeper there said they hardly ever get that close! And then the lion came over too! Hunter was up at the window long enough to snap a photo of him...he thought it was a little scary...
We only saw this one elephant- he/she didn't do much though...still cool to see!
 The boys were very interested the snake! "Look mom! It's a big wormy!" Yeah...not exactly...
We finished the morning/afternoon looking at the penguins again. This time they were swimming!
Right next to the penguins,there is a fountain that turns on and off sporadically and it scared JP everytime...sort of caught one on film. And then Perry got the penguins swimming too : )
And then some cranky kids kicked it into high gear so we peaced...

Monday, May 21, 2012

A Trip to Seattle: Day 1

This past week, Perry, the boys, and I took a trip to Seattle to see Perry's sister Emilienne and my sister Kile before we headed to Oregon for a wedding. Our boys were troopers, for the most part, on the trip over. It did help that I brought a portable DVD player! We woke up early and left around 7am and made a few stops before actually leaving town, but we still made pretty good time.

By the time we arrived in Coeur d'Alene, Perry and the boys were antsy to get out to stretch, so we pulled over at a rest stop to let the boys run around for a little bit. 
JP hung out under the picnic bench for a while playing with his stick...
...while mommy and Hunter spun around and became dizzy!
 Then we played the itsy bitsy spider before we hit the road again.
As soon as we arrived at Aunt Em's house, the boys were busy opening presents.
 They love their new tractor and bulldozer!

After we brought our things inside and made a plan, we headed to downtown Seattle to catch the end of Pike's Market and to have a bite to eat.

This is the famous gum wall...ick! 
 We finished the night up with dinner at Ivar's, which is right on the shore. The boys enjoyed seeing the ferry come and go.
We stayed up fairly late watching Free Willy and eating ice cream. I was surprised how late the boys stayed up! They had a busy day!

My New Camera

Before I post updates on our recent vacation, I need to post this one! For Mother's Day, my darling husband gave me a new camera! [Side note, whenever I call him darling, Hunter or JP chips in and says "His names not darling! Its Daddy!"] We had briefly discussed getting a new one during dinner the night before, but I didn't know if I really wanted one or not. I hadn't even looked at new cameras to see what was even out there. Needless to say, I woke up in the morning with a Canon Rebel T3 on my bathroom counter : ) I love it...but I think Perry loves it more!

So of course, a few days later, when the boys were home from the cabin, and Perry was on his days off, we had a little photo shoot to try it out. Here are a few firsts! Excuse my hair and JP's...

Daddy and his boys
 This is my man <3
 Mommy and her boys
 Hunter loves to scrunch his nose, so mommy joined.
 And then we pretended to be shocked. JP wasn't haven't it...
 And in case you forgot, Hunter is *still* very strong.
 My handsome JP
 Hunter's new favorite...peeing on trees...If you gotta go, then you gotta go I guess!