Friday, December 30, 2011

Statement of Disbelief Regarding My Progeny*

Yesterday was Ethan's birthday and here are the things he got to do:
  • Have a special breakfast made by Dad
  • Go to Burgerville for lunch and have a pepper bacon, Tillamook cheese burger with fries and a chocolate shake.
  • Go bowling with Dad
  • Go out for sushi with Mom
  • Have birthday cake
  • Stay up late

It's true. It's hard for me to understand how I can have a fourteen year old son when we were just bringing him home from the hospital yesterday. I remember that Ethan was born close to 9pm and I thought how wonderful it was that I would be able to go to sleep around 11 by the time everything got tidied. I figured I'd have a fabulous night's sleep now that my big belly was gone. Then the nurse said, before turning out the lights, that she would come in and wake me around 2am. 


I couldn't understand why in the world she would wake me up at that awful hour. When I was sleeping! 

And then I figured it out. Oh, right. The baby.

And today that "baby" went bowling (again) and stunned us all with his trick shot, backwards, through the legs strike! He invited friends and we used a Groupon and had lunch and frosted cookies (instead of cupcakes because the store was sold out of cupcakes at 9pm last night) and soda and three games of bowling and time in the arcade afterwards. 

I'm glad Ethan has such a great group of friends. 

*Title inspired by this video

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas 2012*

We had a super excellent Christmas. Everyone was happy until the day after Christmas when the boys went to Game Stop to spend a little Christmas money on buy-two-get-one games and got in a big argument over money and other stupid stuff.

But Christmas day was lovely in every way.

*I mean 2011

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

More Ideas From Pinterest

Here are a couple other things I've been working on from Pinterest. Just so you know, my New Year's resolution is to give Pinterest up cold turkey. I just can't afford to keep looking.

The Pinterest Idea: Hand stitch your route from a recent trip on a map and frame it.

The Real Life Result: My map was way more colorful than the Pinterest example and the red stitching is barely visible to the naked eye. Even the guy who helped me frame it and who was handling it with his, like, hands didn't notice the stitching until I pointed it out. In his defense he quickly recovered by saying the red dotted line just looked like part of the map. Okay.

The Pinterest Idea: Make a cute collage of photos and items on an empty wall.

The Real Life Result: I think I did pretty good with this one. I even used another Pinterest-found trick which was to use taped-together pieces of waxed paper to create a hanging template. Simply lay your giant piece of waxed paper over your frames (lay them out on the floor the way you want them on the wall), make little marks where the nails should go, then tape the waxed paper to the wall and nail right through it. Don't forget to rip the waxed paper template off the wall in dramatic fashion and wad it up in a giant, waxy ball. 

I do have a few issues with my wall arrangement (the missing 4x4 picture on the top row, for starters) but I realize no one cares, so I'll just shut up.

The Pinterest Idea: Create a low floral arrangement on a buffet or sideboard with matching lamps and a mirror (or flat screen TV)

The Real Life Result: (Poinsettias pending) I could not find a low, long box to save my life, so opted for 3 low, short boxes. I found a close-enough-matching lamp for $7 at Goodwill (I'd been looking for months thank you very much) and decided to hang a picture of the Savior in front of the mirror. This was me going rogue and not a Pinterest idea. I don't know if this type of thing is "done" but I like it. I've seen people do it with wreaths and I feel it has some seasonal significance, that as we look in the mirror we see the Savior and can "reflect" on how we are living our lives in His service, or something like that. 

There's just one, small problem.

I broke the mirror when I went to rehang it. I know I look calm taking the photo, but trust me. I was devastated. Then I was sick to my stomach, depressed, angry, and then just sad. I really liked this mirror. And I really liked my idea to put the picture of the Savior in front of it. And the bottom line is, it was completely my fault it broke. It was an accident, yes, but a preventable one. And I had a moment where knew I should have prevented it, but didn't. 


Friday, December 9, 2011

Big Bathroom Reveal

Before                                                           After

Goodwill frames, a can of spray paint, and some black and white photos of local stuff on the wall above the toilet. (No more lighthouses!)

Another view of the sink and mirror ($30 from Home Depot!)

I am happy!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Pinterest Wins and Losses

Have you heard of the latest internet time-waster Pinterest? When you find something you like on the internet, you can "pin" it to one of your pin boards on your Pinterest file and then it's saved for later when you want to go back and try that cool thing you saw. When you link with friends, you can see what they like from the internet and repin their stuff, and so on and so forth until the garage door opens and your husband is home from work and you realize you have no idea what you're making for dinner.

See? Fun!

I've spent the last few months gathering good ideas on Pinterest and on several occasions, taken that next step and tried the good idea myself. Some of these ideas are winners while some are decidedly losers. Here is all the stuff I've done thanks to Pinterest.

Caramel Apple Cookies - in theory, a fabulous idea. In reality, I didn't care for the TEN WHOLE PACKETS of dry apple cider mix taste these cookies had. But Robert loved them. Also a slight turn-off is that these cookies need to be inverted almost immediately after coming out of the oven or the caramel oozes out. Finally, once the cookies have completely cooled, the caramel hardens and the cookies have to be re-warmed slightly to get the gooey effect going again.

Pretzel Cookies with Chocolate and Peanut Butter Chips - Yum!  While they were kind of unwieldy to work with, I would double the recipe next time.

Brown Sugar Cookies with Maple Glaze - Meh. The kids didn't like them. I would have rather spent my time making ginger snaps or my favorite walnut cookies with maple frosting.

Photo Booth Props - Win! I was in charge of the photo booth for our ward's trunk or treat. These were easy and fun, even though they weren't the exact props I used. I found some printable ones online.

Crock Pot Sesame Ginger Chicken - This was a hit! Especially when I served it with chopsticks. A yummy Sunday dinner.

Candy Corn Jell-o Bundt - I would have written this review on my regular (or not-so-regular) "Jell-o Project" post, but I didn't get a good picture. The orange and yellow were hard to distinguish from each other until the Jell-o was cut into. I made these in individual molds and unfortunately poured in the lemon Jell-o first, which resulted in an upside down candy corn. Sad. But, the good news is that most everyone liked this Jell-o and many asked for seconds.

Painted Knife Block - This was simple and fun and was one more small detail to my summer kitchen makeover. 

Tentacled Hot Dogs - The boys liked preparing and eating this strange looking lunch a couple times. A win!

Chicken Enchiladas - These claimed to be the best chicken enchiladas ever. I didn't think so. They were fine, but I had to make my own enchilada sauce for this one. Not going to do that again.

Totally Awesome Bathroom - This one turned out GREAT! (photos in a day or two)

Cheesy Vegetable Chowder - This was quick, easy and delicious. A win for me and Robert. (Who cares what the boys thought.) I ate this for lunches and left-overs till it was gone. Yum!

Light Saber Chop Sticks - I could not resist. These beauties will be in the boys stockings for Christmas.

Rocky Road Crock-Pot Cake - I'm a sucker for crock-pot cooking and while this cake was yummy, there were a lot of steps for something that just tasted like Hot Fudge Sundae cake

Double Chocolate Cookies with Peppermint Patty Surprise - Technically, I have not made these cookies. I bought a bag of peppermint patties and thought, do I really want a cookie wrapped around my peppermint patty? The answer was no, so I just ate the peppermint patties.

Slow Cooker Cilantro Lime Chicken - This was easy and yummy, but I'm not really creative when it comes to food, so I wasn't sure how or what to serve it with. It made quite a bit, so for our first meal I put out tortillas and fillings for soft tacos. The next night I used the chicken for salads. The third night I finally got it right and added it to tortilla soup.