Friday, April 30, 2010

Mario Party Inspired Cakes

With 4 young men in the house we have our fair share of Mario and Luigi stuff. They love the games and have even picked up a few toys here and there.

For Elijah's birthday Jess had the great idea of making his cakes in the shape of the famous mushroom characters. There are several different ones to choose from but the new (ish) large cupcake mold is the perfect starting point.

Since we were making dessert for 80 people at church I made two large cupcakes that is the equivalent to 3 9x13 cakes.

Elijah requested a Goomba. This was perfect since he's brown and it could be chocolate. If you're unfamiliar this is a goomba:

Here is how I made our Goomba. I made the Giant cupcake according to it's directions with chocolate cake. It took a cake mix and a half so I used the remainder of the batter for cupcakes. You'll need one cupcake cut in half for his feet.

If you want the best tasting Goomba ever, use the recipe on the back of the Hershey's cocoa powder tin. The cake and icing recipes are absolutely decadent. They are SO good. Here's the giant cupcake with a small cupcake cut in half.
The body of the Goomba is starred out with the chocolate icing mentioned above.
Leave space for his eyes and leave a portion of the seam (top and bottom of the large cupcake) for his mouth.

Make a batch of decorators icing (recipe here) divide it. You'll need just a little black for his mouth and brows. I highly recommend the professional coloring in the wedding isle of Wal-Mart or JoAnns. Star out the eyes in white and then use the small hole tip to make angry eye brows, his pupils and his mouth line.

The kids (and most of the adults) recognized him immediately. He was a huge hit!

The second cake was a Red (mine was pink-ish) and white mushroom that makes you "big" when playing Mario games. He was super simple and will used up the remainder of all that icing you made for the Goomba's eyes, teeth, and brows.

Star out a white base and some white spots on the top. Fill in the empty space with either red or green icing. He gets two little slats for eyes right below the seam. Too cute!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Happy 6th Birthday Elijah Jude!

It's been a super full day. I'm exhausted but I sure hope my little man enjoyed himself. He was showered with gifts including his beloved DS that he's waited 6 months for. Thank you to all of you who helped me today & for all your generosity. This was definitely one of those situations where I would not have been able to pull it off without you. Keep checking in for pics of the "Goomba" cake. It was a huge hit!

An extra shout out to Jason, Erin, Zach, and NeNe who all came to Wednesday night to join in on the festivities. I know I make a mean pig in a blanket but still :) Thanks for coming to celebrate our #3. It is apparent that he understands that the cream is the best part of the Oreo. Being in the middle isn't so bad :)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Quick Check In

-Tomorrow is Elijah's 6th birthday and I'm cooking the meal at church. I've decided to make his favorite foods so the menu will consist of pigs in a blanket, homemade mac and cheese, salad, root beer floats and birthday cake. I've invited my family to come a celebrate our little brown bear. I hope WCCC doesn't mind mixing a little bible study with birthday party :)

-Now that I've finished the C25K (couch to 5 K) program I want to continue to increase distance/speed etc. I thought, "Surely there's a 5K to 10K program for my phone." Of course there is! There's an app for everything. It's called the Bridge to 10K and I'm starting it tomorrow. These apps are great because I can just zone out during my run listening to worship music and the voice commands tell me when to start/stop. It's awesome! The race I plan to do in early May is a 5K and a 10K, I may go ahead and plan to do the 10K. We'll see.

-I'm hoping start painting on the garage on Thurs! Jared and I spent the afternoon working in the yard. We are so blessed with a beautiful home!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Grandiose Plans Part 2, Overwhelmed

I'm in stage two of the garage overhaul. Stage one was simply cleaning out the junk. I can clean for days. Love it, you see results and can enjoy your work.

Stage two is prepping the garage for paint. I would honestly rather drink bleach than do this part. First of all there's a ton to do. Second of all I don't have the tools or the know how when it comes to replacing rotten boards.

I got up early this morning and took the power washer to the garage to remove loose paint. I would just like to let you all know what a waste of time this was. I guess it cleaned the exterior which was needed but good ol' hand scraping is definitely the way to go.
Garage before power washer:
After (with some hand scraping):
After Hand scraping:

I need help. I need someone with some basic home improvement skills to come over and give me a list of boards needed. We have a ton of random lumber in our garage and I assume there's quite a bit of what we need in there. I need a Lowe's list of the boards I need that we don't have. The back (West) side of the garage has large sheets of some kind of boards/paneling for the exterior walls that are completely rotten on the bottom.

We have termites. We were told a year ago that the garage had active termites and termite damage. Due to the $3000 price tag to treat the house and garage we have yet to exterminate the nasty creatures. We are currently in talks with Joe S. and Richard. We're forming a plan that will hopefully take place in the next few weeks.

It is my goal to have an attractive building that will serve some purpose. In the 6 years we've lived here anything that was stored out there has been ruined. The roof leaks and it's an eyesore. My goal was to paint at the end of the week after it has some time to dry (due to the power washer).

Needless to say I'm a bit overwhelmed. I'm not wanting to leave it like it is for long but I'm not real sure how to proceed. Painting rotten boards is a waste of time and money. I'll be Google-ing/researching what to do next. If you have any help you'd like to offer we'd much appreciate it. Jared and I just aren't super savvy in the ways of home improvements.


Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Low Down

I know that it appears through my blogging that the woman's retreat consisted of food, snuggling a baby, and more food.

That is somewhat accurate but there was more, much more. In my defense I was blogging via my phone and a quick pic is a lot easier than discussing the theology of the latest session via henpecking on a touch screen.

Here's the retreat in a quick summary.

The worship really was wonderful. My favorite part was the lead singer was a woman with a lower range. I could sing with her easily which really added to the experience (for me).

There were two different main speakers. They were both very gifted and we laughed out loud several times. My only complaint is having Ms. Jess with us made me painfully aware of how little the main sessions had to offer a young single woman. Lots of jokes about menopause and child birth isolated her demographic. In OCC's defense the lion share of women were 50+. Young single ladies were probably less than 5% of the attendees.

The classes offered a wide range of topics. I attended one on leadership, one on the Proverbs 31 woman and God's grace, and my favorite was about the paradox of self esteem. How do we balance what God says about us with the command to consider others better than ourselves. I will be writing on this in the future. Very compelling.

I think most would agree that the best part of retreats like this is who you go with. It is a wonderful time of bonding and fellowship. If nothing else I hope my random images and goofy writing has perked your interest in going next year.

She Loves Me!

Since Amy wasn't able to join us until 3 yesterday she missed out on the joy that is El Charro. When trying to decide what to have for lunch today Jess made a suggestion that opened the heavens and the sun shown upon her face. She said:

"Lets go back, I'd eat there again."

She is a woman of few words, but when she speaks it is profound. Apparently I have a new convert to the ways of El Charro.

This was my sweet parting gift from Joplin:

The amazingly wonderful Fajita Taco Salad with Chicken. I've been eating it for 14 years and as long as they stay in business it will continue to be a yearly ritual.

Jess loves me so much she indulged me, twice, in one trip!!

Adios, until next year.


We slept well! I normally sleep with a box fan and guess what?! There's an app for that! I slept last night like a baby with my earbuds plugged in and the fan noise lulling me to sleep.

Not wanting to miss a workout I got up bright and early and enjoyed a run!

Now we're back at Ozark

Learning how to be a better leader in the church from this nice lady

1 Peter 4:10 Each one should use whatever gift he has to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in it's various forms.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

How You Doin?

-Today I'm planning to get my house clean, laundry done, and get packed. Tomorrow is the Woman's retreat at OCC and we're leaving at 7am! I can't wait to spend time with great friends and see what God has in store.

-Please pray for my sweet girl. Anneliese seems to have some allergy issues that we're trying to get sorted out. She can't have lactose, she gets super sick. Apparently Soy is out as well as goat's milk. Yesterday we started on lactose free, milk based, Vit D milk. We're praying this is the solution her tiny self needs to feel better. I'm desperate to get it sorted out before I leave for the weekend. We've been having to wash her in the sink after diapers due to her diaper rash. She also has an allergy to cinnamon. She's a delicate flower you know :)

-Graham just walked up to me with a piece of popcorn and said, "Mom, you should lick's spicey." Or not.

-Have you ever tasted a chocolate fudge pop tart? Not the generic but a genuine pop tart? I'm really wishing I hadn't. They taste a lot like a brownie. I grew up on brown sugar cinnamon (which I equally love) but didn't realize what I was missing out on. Be careful they're 3pts a piece or 6pts for the package of 2. Yikes!

-I'm becoming an avid runner! I'm not real sure why I quit last time. I feel great and I'm good at it (who isn't really...not a lot of skill involved :)) I'm going to do another run in Lawrence on May 8th. The cool part is after my run there is a family 1 mile "race" that we'll participate in. I love that my kids will grow up having had an active youth. I long for the day when the kids say, "My mom ran all the time and my dad loved to bike and play ball." No more obesity in this family thank you very much! (Have you seen the spouse? He's lost a ton and is still working hard! He has plans for a new bike in the next couple weeks. I'm so excited!)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

WCCC Bloggers, Want A Button?!

Look in the upper right corner of my blog and you'll see a picture of our church.

I created a link (button) through the image. I know several church members have blogs so I decided to share the html code so you too can share the church's website with your readers.

Copy this code:

<a href="" target="_blank"><img src="<a href=" action="view¤t="timthumb.png" target="_blank" /><img src="" border="0" alt="Photobucket" /></a> /></a>

Go to your blogger dashboard and click on "Layout."

Click "add a gadget" and pick the HTML gadget.

Paste the code in the larger box. I titled it "Our Church" so as to explain the image and you can do the same if you want.

Congrats! You now have a Wyandotte County Christian Church button! And who wouldn't want one of those?!! You'd be surprised how many people have come to our church by simply stumbling upon our website. It's a simple way to spread the Word!

Pigs In a Blanket

I'm making a fun lunch for the kids today. It's the boys and I's FAV!

Home made pigs in a blanket. I just use my bread recipe and wrap up some all beef hot dogs.

For you Weight Watchers out there use Hebrew National 97% fat free all beef dogs. They are only 1 pt a piece. If you wrap it in the bread they're only 3 pts each!

Make the bread in your bread machine like normal. I leave the dogs out for a hour so they are room temp. Make sure you dry your hot dogs with a paper towel so wrapping them in dough isn't so difficult. You don't have to let them rise, once wrapped stick them in a preheated oven at 350 and bake until the bread is golded (about 12-14 mins).

Another awesome idea is to wrap mozzarella sticks and then season the dough with garlic salt. Dip them in marinara and they are DELISH! Use the Weight Watcher's mozzarella (1pt each) and they are 3pts.


Monday, April 19, 2010

Switch It Up!

Jared and I are going to lo-carb it for a few days to switch up our diet. I went on a search for recipes and decided to try this for dinner tonight.
Ropa Vieja

Submitted By: CHRISTYJ
Photo By: Lil Mermaid
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 3 Hours

Ready In: 3 Hours 20 Minutes
Servings: 7
"Picante sauce enlivens the flavor of this pot roast, which simmers in red wine with onions. It makes great tortilla filling, and could also be served over rice."

3 pounds beef chuck roast
1 (1 ounce) package dry onion soup mix
1 onion, chopped
1 cup red wine
1/2 cup water
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup salsa
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (160 degrees C).
2. Heat oil in a Dutch oven, over medium high heat. Add beef and brown meat on all sides. Reduce heat, add onion and cook until soft but not browned. Add onion soup mix, wine, water and picante sauce. Bring to boil
3. Cover and place in preheated oven for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Check occasionally to make sure there is sufficient liquid in bottom of pan; add more wine if necessary. Before serving shred beef.
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED © 2010 Printed from 4/19/2010

I'll be making it sans red wine and we'll serve it over brown rice. Whenever you're trying to lose it's always good to throw your body a loop every now and then. For you Weight Watchers out there this is a filling foods recipe or Core friendly recipe.

***Update***I used salsa like it called for but added a can of hot Rotel and it is SO good. This would make DELICIOUS beef enchiladas. I hope you try it! It's really yummy and soo spicey (due to the Rotel).

I'll be sure to let you know how it tastes and what the scale says after a week of no simple carbs!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

So Different


Last night I bathed the fab 5 for church this morning. After Anneliese was diapered I let her wander a bit so she could "tickle" her own belly (this is her new favorite thing).

I was concerned she was into something foul (toilet, litter box etc) and instead I found her in front of my mirror with my brush, brushing her hair.

I apologize for the grainy image but I just grabbed my phone and took one as quick as possible in order to capture the moment.

She's just so different. Wonderfully and uniquely created, our Anneliese.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Results

This is my result email. I'm really pleased with the time since we're just in week 7 of our 9 week training. We aren't technically supposed to even be able to run a 5K for 2 more weeks. 32:25 will be my number to beat at the next run!

"Congratulations on finishing the Run for Mercy
on April 17, 2010. For your records, the weather that day was
beautiful sunny day.

There were 206 finishers in the Female 30 to 39 age group and
976 finishers in the race.

Your overall finish place was 390 and your age group finish place
was 74. Your overall finish percentile was 40 while your age group
percentile was 36. Your time of 32:25.3 gave you a 10:27 pace per mile.

We hope to see you again next year."

Oceans Of Mercy 5K

Ms. Jess and I headed out early this morning. This is us fresh out of bed :)
I didn't sleep well last night in anticipation of the race. It's probably goofy to most but this was the first time I've ever done a race. I didn't really know what to expect and I was excited.

We were running down in Shawnee where Jared's cousins live and I hoped to see them. It was funny because as we started off I mentioned to Jess, "we are going to run right past their houses." As we rounded the corner there was Brandi up on her deck and Dan right on the street. I waved and yelled like a goofball but hey, who cares :) Later in the run I saw Abby and her older two on the corner. I guessed it was them by Jameson's K-State jacket :) Seeing family was an added bonus to a super cool morning.

The atmosphere was hyped. Everyone was cold yet excited. This caught my eye
There was a breakfast table waiting for us as we finished. Can I just say there is NO way I would eat a Krispy Kreme just as I finished running any amount of distance. Are you kidding?! ONE Krispy Kreme has the same amount of calories that I burned in my run. There's no way that's worth it.

We ran into several people. Tom and Vicki M, Zach and Maeve B., and then the extended Clark (Anita's fam) family.

The path was pretty even and I really enjoyed running with a crowd. As we were leaving I asked Jess, "Did you think a year ago you would ever be doing this?!" And she replied, "No! A year ago I was holding your baby because you had just broken your foot." WOW, what a difference a year makes. Jess and I were both thrilled to finish!
We have plans for several runs this summer and I'm eager to try longer runs. It feels good to be fit!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Our Progeny 2010

Graham 4, Elijah 6, Tanner 8, Brennan 9, Anneliese 1

Grandiose Plans

This is our nasty garage. It's gross and that's all about to change.

I have great plans for the eyesore. It all started this morning when Ms. Jess backed up a beautiful Dodge pickup to the open doors. We removed 90% of the junk in the main stalls and now I'm cleaning and organizing.

We have pounds and pounds of cans that will make their way to the recycling station this next week. I plan to use the money to purchase RED paint. This garage is going to get a full barn makeover including 1 x 2 's in the shape of an X on the utility stall (far left door).

Sweet Richard has agreed to help me with the power washer. We are going to clean it inside and out (removing flaking paint). Jared and I have a goal of concreting the drive way in front of the main stalls and installing a basketball goal.

FINALLY, after 6 years it will look as if it belongs with the property :) I'll be sure to keep you updated to my progress.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Mother's Day Wish

In the right column there is a link for Craftaholics Anonymous. I love this site due to her great ideas and relatable wit. Today she posted a giveaway featuring a jewelry artisan. Here's a quote from Linda (Craftaholics Anonymous) introducing Lora:

"i'd like to introduce you to the uber talented Lora. she makes the most gorgeous hand stamped jewelry ever! LOVE her work!! she uses only the finest materials; sterling silver, genuine leather, and swarovski crystals. and she's a woman on a mission. Lora has a daughter with Cystic Fibrosis and she is determined to help others fighting this horrible disease. all the profits from her "believe" necklace go to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and she plans to continue this until the cure is found. wow. isn't she awesome? "

I was intrigued by her story so I went to the website (click here) and fell in love with this:

It's called "The Great Love Necklace" and I'm in great love with it! She has an amazing gift and I absolutely cherish custom jewelry.

I wanted to give Lora as much advertisement as possible. I admire her and want to support her and her daughter. Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

10 Things

Ten Things I wish I knew before I became a mother.

1) They will survive me. Due to my own issues/insecurities I have had serious anxieties about doing irreparable damage to my children. My husband has to to remind me often that the kids live a very safe and secure life and they are blessed. They will look back on their childhood positively.

2) They will grow. Simple and obvious but when you're in the throws of several young children all in a row just being reminded that this is temporary brings hope and excitement for what's to come. Your 2 year old will grow into a witty, loving 11 year old...eventually.

3) This isn't child's play. Raising children isn't for the faint of heart. It's a difficult road that will wear you out and hiding in the closet is not only ok, it's required at times so Mom can catch her breath and refocus.

4) God loves your children more than you could ever hope to. He is in control and has their best interest at heart. Allow Him to lead you in your parenting and trust them into His care. Pray for their present and their future.

5) How you parent them now determines the rest of their lives. You can't wing it, you have to plan. Show them how to interact with a spouse, show them how to love and respect others, show them discipline and honoring those who are in charge. Be the kind of parent you want them to be some day. Live and parent proactively.

6) Tell them no, often. Work hard to raise a child that will be able to endure the hardships that will come in their lives. Be kind, but be just. Teach them about grace and forgiveness. As adults we are often told "no" to the things we want or desire. Helping them learn what's truly important when they're small will make them happier and content adults.

7)Stick to your guns. No one benefits from you not standing your ground. Sure the temporary issue seems to be relieved but it will come back. Follow through on your punishments. You will gain peace and your child will respect you. (This was the hardest for me especially with the first couple).

8) Children are sinful. They are fallen just like all of mankind. They will be selfish, they will manipulate, they will lie, and they may even bite :) No one has to teach your child to do wrong. It comes naturally. Treat other families and children with grace. Your child is not perfect and neither are theirs.

9) Read a Proverb a day, every day and when you're done; start over. God has granted a lot of wisdom and instruction in His word. He even put it in quick little doses that are easy to understand and easy to consume.

10) Seek wisdom. No one is perfect and those who have gone before us have some helpful instruction. Take help from others, evaluate it. Use what is helpful and discard the rest. Parenting is a learn as you go process and learning from others experiences saves you (and your children) the pain of learning the lesson on your own. Be humble and receive corrective criticism with an open heart and mind.

These are all things that I'm working on. I believe that I'm 9 years into an intensive hands on education on parenting. Most of this list are things I have done wrong. I am so thankful for a loving, forgiving God who's mercies are new every morning.

22 The faithful love of the Lord never ends!b]">[b]
His mercies never cease.
23 Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance;
therefore, I will hope in him!”

25 The Lord is good to those who depend on him,
to those who search for him.
26 So it is good to wait quietly
for salvation from the Lord.

Lamentations 3:22-26

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

HELLOOOOO Smoothies!

I drink coffee all winter to stay warm.

I drink smoothies all summer to keep cool.

Apparently my body temp is seriously affected by the beverages I consume.

I do believe Amy C. and I keep Aldi afloat with our frozen strawberry purchases.

I was reading over at Gina's WW recipes and found out she's going to be posting smoothie recipes all week!!!!


I am SOOO excited I just can't wait! Go...Now...Go! Check out her super simple, super low point blueberry smoothie.

Weekend Wrap Up

-It's Tuesday but Daddy's been taking Monday's off so our weekend just ended.

-I ran Saturday morning and it was super difficult. I'm not sure why but I just really struggled. I was determined to run the full time on Monday. There is an app for my phone called Map My Run so I decided Monday morning to use it to see just how far we were running. I started it, then went to my couch to 5K app and headed out. Apparently the two apps running together gave the phone fits. I ran, and I ran, and I ran. I kept thinking, "Surely I'm half way by now!" I pulled the phone out and checked it. It said I was a little less than half way so I just kept plugging away for another 20 minutes. Exhausted and about to hurl I pulled the phone out again desperate to see why it hadn't said, "One minute remaining" only to find it stuck exactly where it was 20 minutes prior! I figured it up and I ran for approx 45 minutes when I was only supposed to run 25. I guess I reached my goal of running the entire workout. Ugh, that was miserable! If nothing else you can say I am NOT a quitter! :)

-Sunday afternoon Miss Jess and I had a class session with Richard. He taught us how to change our own oil! Jess and I (with Richard's tutoring) changed the oil in Jared and I's vans and in her little car! YAY We used the pink tool set Jared gifted me for Christmas. Girls rock...Richard rocks! Thank you Papa we love you!

-Jared and I spent the day yesterday working in the yard. It was such a beautiful day and cleaning up the yard and mowing just seemed like a perfect fit. Before we started however we took the kids to the Legends and let them run their legs off. It was so nice!

-Last night our sweet Mellie (aka Smell miester, Smellie Mellie, Smell) went missing. We searched high and low. We were so worried. We all love her. She has a wild hair and darts for the door whenever it's open. We were in and out all day working on the yard and we assumed she'd made it outside. Late last night we heard a muffled meow which sent Jared and I searching again to no avail. Laying in bed I began to pray asking God to bring her home (yes God cares about our pets, He cares that Tanner would be devastated to lose his precious Mellie). I immediately remembered that I sent Brennan to retrieve some shorts from the attic. I text Jared from the bedroom (he was all the way out in the living room and I was snuggled in bed). He released our poor kitty from the attic! We were all greatly relieved! She loves the basement and tends to hang out in there, we never guessed she'd feel the same about the attic. She's an odd one, but we love her and are so glad she's safe!

-I'm having some fun going through my closet and window shopping at the Legends. I have a wish list of clothes. Most of my stuff is going on 8 years old and it was used when I got a hold of it. I went into Forever 21 the other day and there is a room off to the side that is full of pink and cream girlie clothes that I'm in LOVE with. They're adorned with knit and crochet and are super soft. So feminine and classy. There's a lot in that store I wouldn't touch but that one little room off to the side needs to be my closet :) Now that the Legends is here and has been established for a while I'm really hoping for some great finds this summer at the garage sales. It helps tremendously that I'm at goal. It's a lot more fun trying on clothes.

-Next Saturday Jess and I are Running For Mercy. This will be my first race and it's just a 5k but I'm stoked! I can't wait and I'm super eager to experience the whole race atmosphere. Tom and Vicki M are also running. I'll post my time and such. It's the first of several runs we have scheduled for the summer.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Elusive Female

What you see here is the elusive Altic female (aka anneliese-a-dorable)

We have been desperate to see one of these in their natural habitat. It was thought for years that such a creature did not exist.
Note how friendly she is. As she draws near note her reddish hair and large dimpled cheeks. This is a rare and gorgeous specimen.

Just when you think you may have captured this rare find...
She makes her escape.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Woman Of Faith

Cindy C. wrote a blog due to a contest through Women of Faith. The idea is that you write down what you would talk about if asked to speak at a WOF Conference.

The problem is I'm challenged apparently and went through the whole blog link process and attached it to the blog I wrote on Weight Woes. Not exactly what I would talk about if given a once in a life time opportunity to speak to thousands of women.

The frustrating thing about my blunder is that I have aspirations of some day being a published author and doing public speaking. I have 4 lifetimes worth of things to speak on. God is amazing and has grown/healed me in ways I never thought possible.

If you would please humor me I would like to list a few things that I really would love to speak on if anyone ever was interested enough to ask :)

1) Home schooling, So not my idea. Honoring your husband's conviction even if the burden falls on you.

2) The Frugal Five, living within in your means while having a large family. Honor God with your family size and He will provide for your needs.

3) Submission is not a dirty word. The beauty and power that comes from truly submitting your will to God and to your husband.

4) Honoring God with your body. Recognizing the difference between being healthy and being vain. Having modesty in a very immodest world.

5) Healing after Loss. Throw away all the things you've heard about the "Grief Cycle." Working through a loss and allowing God's healing.

6) Raising the Crazies without becoming one. Parenting the little people with a consistent discipline and a loving heart.

I really could go on and on. I am only 33 but God is teaching me A LOT of lessons in my life and I would love to share how He's changing me. If any of this could encourage anyone it would make the journey that much sweeter.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

A Whole Lotta Nothin :)

-45,000 hits! That seems notable! Thanks so much for reading. I'm feeling awful fond of all of you. You are my audience, my friends, my family. Honestly you're my link to the outside world while here at home doing God's will among the shorties. All that to say, "I appreciate you and your interest in all this goofiness!"

-I love Craigslist. Well, the ads on craigslist. There are some scary things out there but the sale stuff rocks. After going through my skinny clothes I realized that I have matured significantly since last at this weight. I will not be seen in the shorts I own. Seriously...there's no way, they are TOO short for a mom of 5 in her 30's. So I started searching for some capris and found a gal in NKC that had a ridiculous amount and wanted to get rid of them. I met her at Nebraska Furniture Mart and went through her stash. I now have 5 pairs of adorable capris and 2 new shirts! Ms. Amy met me and she also got a few pair and a new shirt. It's a lot of fun having a clothing buddy. Tomorrow I'm meeting a gal with a stash of 9 tanks tops from J Crew. My summer closet will be complete for mere pennies!

-Yesterday Tanner was doodling on a worksheet and across the top it said, "My mom is not fat." Well, that's good to know. I'm pretty sure it's in response to his brother Eli who told me the other day that I still look big pregnant (nice). Tanner's our tender heart and probably felt defensive, but still that was odd :)

-I chew my finger nails and have my entire life. I can remember my Dad offering me $10 a finger if I would just stop chewing them. Jared tells me on a regular basis, "Quit eating your fingers." It really is a habit and I don't even realize I'm doing it most of the time. On Sunday night my friend Vicki M came over for study and I noticed her pretty nails. She goes and gets them done close to the house. I talked to Jared about it and he encouraged me to go. Monday afternoon I had a full set put on and my hands do not look like my own. It makes such a huge difference and my husband is thrilled. It's a frivolity obviously but Jared loves it and encourages me to go. Who am I to argue? It's not too often a mom of 5 gets pampered like that. Now I have an excuse to go every month for a fill. Thank you Jared! I can't stop looking at them, they're soft pink and sparkly.

-My little girl LOVES Sesame Street. She's hilarious. Her tiny little self will snuggle into the bean bag for 35-40 minutes and watch episodes that have bits and pieces from when I was a little girl. She giggles at Big Bird and sings with Elmo. None of our kids have enjoyed it as much as she does. Tanner was a big fan of Elmo but not at this age. I have started Tivo-ing it for her. It's precious to watch her watch it.

-Today is my big brother Jason's birthday. Happy Birthday Jason!! He's 30...something :) I think he would agree when I say, WHO CARES! What matters is this year he became a Daddy! It has been a real blessing watching you fit so perfectly into your role as Zach's Papa. He is blessed to have you both and I couldn't be happier for all 3 of you. God is good!

Weight Woes

I am quickly coming to the realization that I'm not going to be able to make it back to "The Number" on the scale I've been working so hard to shrink to.

It's really fine. I had a conversation with myself this morning that went a lot like this:

-Do you feel thin/healthy? Yes, finally I really do.

-Are you eating healthy and exercising? Yes, and I don't feel deprived plus I'm running more with each week.

-How old where you when you maintained "The Number"? Hmm, I was that weight from 25-30. Now I'm 33.

-How many kids have you had? Right....that would be 5.

Ok, I get it. This new number is where a healthy (both physically and more importantly emotionally) Shannon needs to maintain.

Yes, I really talk to myself like that. I like to write and writers are introspective (vs crazy :)). The old weight is a mere 10 lbs from where I am right now and that seems so close but over the last month it's felt so far away. My body seems to have settled right where I am.

I have decided to keep on just as I've been, making good choices and running. If by chance the weight goes down fine, but if it doesn't I am content where I am.

This may seem trivial to some, but as a goal setter I work to achieve those goals. It's important to me that I complete things. At the same time I have had a lot of Weight Watchers members come in with unrealistic goals and end up quitting the program all together when they aren't able to quite get there. This blog is me giving myself permission to be right where I am. No stress, no guilt, just a healthy mom working to glorify God in every area of her life. Including this one.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

A Big Fiber Hit!

I made these this afternoon and they are really good! I changed it slightly. I'm not a peach fan so instead of the pureed peaches I just doubled the pumpkin and I didn't have the vanilla flavored powdered creamer so I just left that out. I'm also not a huge fan of raisins but LOVE craisins so I doubled the craisins and omitted the raisins. They are HUGE and only 2pts! I love them!

I found the recipe on the back of my Fiber One cereal box. I'm a huge fan of Hungry Girl and she's a huge fan of Fiber One :) Did I mention that they are HUGE? They are the size of the palm of my hand and the thickness and only 2 POINTS!

HG's Grab 'n Go Breakfast Cookies

PER SERVING (1 cookie): 154 calories, 1.5g fat, 166mg sodium, 32.5g carbs, 5g fiber, 10.5g sugars, 5g protein -- POINTS® value 2*

These things are large, fiber-packed, portable, and SOOO DELICIOUS!!!! Make a batch in the PM, and you'll have super-quick b-fasts for the next few AMs!

1/2 cup regular oats (not instant)
6 tbsp. whole-wheat flour
1/4 cup Fiber One bran cereal (original), ground to a breadcrumb-like consistency in a blender or food processor
1/4 cup Splenda No Calorie Sweetener (granulated)
1/3 cup Gerber Peaches (or another brand of pureed peaches, found in the baby food aisle)
1/4 cup canned pure pumpkin
1/4 cup fat-free liquid egg substitute (like Egg Beaters Original)
1 tbsp. golden raisins
1 tbsp. Ocean Spray Craisins (original)
2 tbsp. brown sugar, not packed
2 tsp. Coffee-mate Sugar Free French Vanilla powdered creamer
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Chop raisins and Craisins into small pieces. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, combine the oats, flour, Fiber One crumbs, Splenda, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Mix well.

In a separate bowl, dissolve Coffee-mate into 2 tbsp. hot water. Add all other wet ingredients (pureed peaches, pumpkin, and egg substitute), and mix well.

Add liquid mixture to the dry ingredients, and stir until completely blended. Slowly sprinkle chopped raisins and Craisins into the batter, making sure they don't all stick together.

Spray a large baking pan with nonstick spray, and spoon batter into 4 evenly spaced circles. Spread batter out a bit with the back of a spoon. Place pan in the oven for 12 - 14 minutes (until tops of the treats are just slightly crispy). Remove pan from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Then grab 'n go!


HG Alternative! If you don't feel like whipping out the blender to grind that Fiber One, simply leave the F1 crumbs out of the recipe. Your cookies won't be as high in fiber, but they'll still taste great and clock in with a POINTS® value of 2* each.

Back on Track

This is a kick in the rear to all you Weight Watchers out there.

Put the Easter candy down!

Unless you have a will of pure iron you indulged in a few yummy non point friendly foods this past weekend.

That's great but now it's time to get back into gear. The only difference between those who maintain their weight and those who gain it back is this: Will you eat something you love and then start fresh the next day back on track?

Even super skinny people eat chocolate. They just don't eat it all day...every the pound.

So cut it out, start counting points and get your rear in gear! The summer is drawing near and sweat pants and hoodies aren't really reasonable summer wear.

Healing Rain

Yesterday morning I was scheduled for a run. It was stormy and dark and after a really full weekend I reluctantly left the comforts of my bed.

I leashed Sophie and headed out. It was barely sprinkling when I started but it wasn't long before the rain came down.

As I was running and listening to my praise music I couldn't help but think of Healing Rain by Micheal W. Smith.

I run for physical health. I run for the emotional release it provides, but yesterday I ran to praise a Savior that brings healing. I've only had one other run that felt truly worshipful.

As the rain washed over me I felt a spiritual renewal. We have a Savior, He is risen and He loves you so much that He died so that you may live.

Praise the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless His holy name!

I am not afraid, I am not afraid!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Celebration With the Altic's; 2 down 1 To Go!

Typically Easter with the Altic's is held at Grandpa and Grandma's. This year due to tight schedules and traveling we decided to have it at our house.
God granted beautiful weather for His resurrection Day. I was so pleased with how well our wonderful home housed the event. The kids (all 11) spent the bulk of the day outside. The older kids ate on the porch under the umbrella.
We filled over 150 eggs and hid them all around the yard. The kids had a ball collecting them and I was giddy to have our first Easter egg hunt at our house!
They all giggled as they collected their loot.
No matter what you've heard let it be known Red Heads have the most fun :)

Happy Resurrection Day


Image by: Tanner Altic, April 2010

Mark 16:6 (New International Version)

6"Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

1 Down 2 To Go

Today was Easter/Bill's birthday with my family. This is Bill (my mom's friend) and his birthday cake. It was delicious (and I'll be running at least 3 miles this evening because of it).
Mom, Bill, Will, Becky, Jason and Zach were all able to come over for lunch (We missed our Auntie Erin, Auntie Courtney and the kids!!). We had a delicious meal and the kids played Wii with their Uncles. It was a lot of fun. Graham and Anneliese had a special treat when Uncle Jason showed up with belated birthday gifts. Anneliese received a ride on pony (pics will follow) and Graham got a bag full of Thomas. They were thrilled! The boys played with Thomas for the entire afternoon.
Uncle Jason and Zachary

It always makes me happy to hold a sweet baby especially when it's Zachary! I LOVE that boy!
Auntie Shannon and Zachary

The day started out pretty rough when I woke up with swollen eyes, runny nose, sneezing, and coughing like a mad woman. When my mom arrived I made a quick jaunt over to Target for some allergy meds. Thankfully within a couple hours I had relief. I'm not sure why but this season has hit me like a ton of bricks.

Tomorrow is Easter!!! Jared's family is all coming over for lunch. We are planning bike riding, trampoline jumping, and some serious swinging for the 11 children :) The adults will all be busy eating and chatting I'm sure.

Tomorrow night is our bible study. Since most didn't have a lot going on we decided to go ahead and have study. So, after the Altic/Rice clan head out we'll be watching the Truth Project and then...I shall pass out.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Happy April!

Picture taken by Jared Altic at the Henry Doorly Zoo Omaha, Nebraska

Do Not Worry
25"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life[b]?

28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Matthew 6:25-34

Spring is here! Spring is a beautiful season that reminds me of the newness God grants. He offers hope, life, joy, and peace. I pray that each time you see a new bloom or a bright blade of grass that you will remember our Creator God and that He loves you and will take care of you in all things big or small.

God is good all the time, All the time God is good!