Monday, September 29, 2008


On Saturday, we all went to a local apple orchard and picked apples. Then the big girls and I made applesauce. It is so yummy!!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Countdown to Christmas

I am going to try to send Christmas cards this year! Actually send them, not just think about it. So, I joined the 100 Days to Christmas Countdown. They even have a giveaway - check it out!

What happens when Mama takes a nap?

What happens when Mama tries to nap without plopping the crazies in front of the tv first?

Yes, that is green, blue, and pink marker in her hair! Somehow Diva and Curly Girl thought it would be a good idea to decorate C. They they panicked and tried to wash her up with soap and a washcloth. Oh my, no more naps for me!

PS - today's crazy meter, on a scale of 1 to 10 is 100!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

First Nature Walk of the Fall

Here are O and K collecting nature items to take home and look at more closely. Everyone had their own bag, and they all collected a lot of fun stuff.

Sketching some items and maybe looking more closely at something else.

The "gooses" at the lake, according to A.

Anyone know what kind of fungus this is?

All 7 kids! In front are Diva with Daycare Child (she really needs a new name), middle is Curly Girl, backrow is Wondertwin C, K, O, and Wondertwin A.

Diva holding a grasshopper. This she said was her favorite part of the day.

Diva picking up an earthworm.

Look closely at that worm, so you all can sketch it later.

My first attempt

Here is my very first attempt at making a shaped cake, using buttercream, and fondant. My friend Cakemaker has made some wonderful cakes for me in the past. Here is one she made for teen, and who could forget the beautiful one she made for the Wondertwins , that I just realized I never posted about, since I failed to post about the birthdays this summer. Here it is!

She also made one for my Advent Tea last year. Follow this link to see it!

Anyway back to my cake. Cakemaker is a wonderful friend, and as such she does not charge for what her cakes are worth. I know their worth, and can no longer order them (and underpay her) without guilt. So, I borrowed her cake pan, so fondant, and buttercream; and made the above cake for a church cake walk today. So, what do you think of my first attempt?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My kids are gross

So, I have been sheltering my girls from some realities of life. One being that worms can live in the food we eat, more specifically peaches. Today the wondertwins wanted to help me cut the peaches. I warned them, and Curly Girl who soon joined us, about the worms. Diva showed up to do this too. As soon as I mentioned the worms.....

1) all 4 girls ran away screaming and vowed to never eat another peach
2) all 4 girls started cutting peaches quickly to see who would get the first worm and then proceed to fight over it

Yes, my dainty little girls did number 2!!!!!

After fighting over the 2 found worms, they named the worms (Chrysilis - because she looks like one when she hangs AND shakey). Then they put them in a jar with a peach. Wondertwin C dubbed them her "bwest fwend."

I guess maybe I underestimated my girls.

But...........eeeeeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwwww - there are worms in my kitchen by choice.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I love the end of summer...

Pictures coming soon, but I wanted to share the yummy things I have been able to make; thanks to the goodness of friends.

My garden failed this year. You see, we just moved into this wonderful house last September. Therefore, we did not know where the spring rains would drain. This year was a very wet year in the midwest. It seems our garden, planted in May, was the low spot in the neighborhood. Therefore, everything flooded. We were able to harvest some tomatoes, but only little ones. Oh, and poison ivy is apparently growing there too.

Anyway, some friends and family gave me veggies and fruit to can/freeze.
I have canned or frozen:
9 jelly jars of peach jam
9 1/2 qts of peaches
7 jars of chili sauce
3 jars spaghetti sauce
9 qts + 1 pt tomatos
2 gallons of peppers
1 gallon cabbage
2 gallons green beans
2 jars of cherry pie filling
12 qts + 2 pints + 6 jelly jars for dh to take to work of applesauce
1 qt of apple pie filling
1 pt + 7 jelly jars of apple butter

Grandma Betty gave us a good portion of those tomatoes and peppers and all of the green beans! Of course her garden was wonderful.

Thanks to all of my good friends who gave us their excess fruits and veggies so that we could have some yummy food later in the year: Joni, Anna, Stephanie, just to name a few.

Tell me what you have canned this year.

Curly Girl's Day Out

We are trying a new thing where we take one child out for a day with just mom and dad. We can only choose one child a month because of the cost of a sitter for the other for. With this schedule, each child will get a turn 3 times a year, not too bad.

First up was CG. She chose a day at the local children's museum and to go to the local Super Store to spend her birthday money on a scooter. We also splurged and had small treats from Sonic. Curly was also allowed to choose dinner that night. She chose spaghetti. I had just made 3 jars of spaghetti sauce, so it was perfect.

CG petting the corn snake - named - Corny. Her best pal, Windy the Turtle was outside, and the outside was closed that day.

Notice the tongue - LOL

A rare picture of me, with CG.

CG with her Daddy.

All in all, it was a wonderful day. Fun was had by all, even those who stayed home with the sitter.

Too much TV?

So, I am trying to decide if my children watch too much Food Network...

Today, Diva and Curly Girl decided to have a Food Network Challenge: Hawaii Cakes.

They came up with the theme, all designs, the idea itself, and did it all independently of me.

Sorry for the poor pictures, I used my husband's iphone.

The picture above is Diva's cake - notice the standing palm tree and volcano.

Diva's on the left, Curly Girl's on the right.

Diva's - top view - notice the flamingo and palm tree confetti glued on.

CG's - top view - more confetti.

I do believe that the confetti may have been their inspiration. This project took them about an hour. They were totally independent. They had a blast. Then, they wanted me to choose a winner. Um, no. They both are winners!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Singing In the Rain

Here are some pictures of Curly Girl and the Wondertwins playing in the residual rain we received from Hurricane Ike (I think that is the name).

Curly Girl is in the Yellow, Wondertwin C in the blue, and Wondertwin A in the pink. Diva, of course, did not play in the rain, she is too dignified for such folly.

Sorry for the quality, "the Dad" was inside sick and took pictures through the window.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Once a Girl Scout...

Very inspirational story. If you know where it was published please let me know, I received it via a GS leader yahoo group.

Girl Scout, 95, goes to camp

Laurel Lake resident Gerry Kelly fulfills dream

By Jewell Cardwell
Beacon Journal staff writer

''If you never dream, how are you gonna have a dream come true?'' wiser minds than mine have concluded.

Geraldine ''Gerry'' Kelly knows that. Even dreams in Technicolor, too.

More importantly, the 95-year-old resident of Laurel Lake Retirement Community in Hudson was wise enough to share her dreams with folks who, this week, made a very special one come true.

That of being a Girl Scout one more time.

The Girl Scout alum got her wish courtesy of a national program called Second Wind Dreams, in which Laurel Lake participates.

''Gerry always talks about her days in Girl Scouting and how she used to love to camp,'' said Mary Ford, Laurel Lake activities assistant.

''She said she never had the opportunity to visit Peninsula's Camp Ledgewood because her troop leader had another place to go camping.''

So the powers that be at Laurel Lake, led by Kathy Marged — who oversees the facility's Second Wind Dreams program — caucused and came up with a plan.

With the cooperation of the Girl Scouts of North East Ohio, Mrs. Kelly was given lodging at the camp and a chance to fulfill her dream.

While she wasn't able to spend the night in a cabin, she did the next best thing, with the enthusiastic support of the staff that included Ford, Marged, state test nurse assistant Juanita Medina and aide Patience DeFratis.

Mrs. Kelly and company were even formally registered as Girl Scouts for the year. Their troop name was ''the Experimenters.''

The giggling group arrived at the camp Thursday, staying late into the night. Lunching, cooking dinner over the fireplace and making S'mores were just part of the adventures. ''We tried singing, too,'' she volunteered, registering a Simon Cowell-like, thumbs-down critique with her face.

Even so, the banjo/guitar accompaniment provided by Susan Bushko, Laurel Lake's wellness manager, was a hit.

Mrs. Kelly managed to pack in a lot of fun in a little time. So many, she said, that upon her return to Laurel Lake that evening, ''I got into bed immediately. I kept my socks on and my hearing aids in,'' she joked.

''I slept solidly until it was time for me to get up this morning [7 a.m. Friday] and come back.

''It bought back many fond memories,'' said Mrs. Kelly, who arrived Friday morning in time for breakfast over the fire.

''All I can say is, I'd hate to be starving,'' Mrs. Kelly joked from her wheelchair as she watched her pals loading brown lunch bags with bacon, hash browns and eggs and cooking them over an open flame.

Although it wasn't the breakfast she's used to at Laurel Lake — eggs with buttered wheat toast, orange juice and coffee, sometimes oatmeal — the roughing-it Girl Scout meal seemed to meet with her approval, as evidenced by the two forks she used to consume it.

''She's just so much fun,'' DeFratis said of the retired teacher and mother of three sons. ''She's always got a smile on her face. And she tells good jokes.''

Mrs. Kelly also has a real affection for playing cards — rummy, but mostly bridge. And she's very particular about her partners. ''I'm just very competitive,'' she explained.

And a very satisfied Girl Scout these days, thanks to those thoughtful enough to recognize the power of a dream.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Just like her Momma

I made a blue (yellow) cake with chocolate frosting for the Feast of the Holy Name of Mary today. I cleaned out the frosting container as best I could (using my finger and tasting of course). Later on, I see C with chocolate all over her face, and I ask what happened. She points to the "now really empty and clean" frosting container - and, well, I laugh.

Because I cannot walk past a frosting container without eating some either. LOL

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Twin funny

Me: Hey girls, as soon as "day care child" leaves we need to go to the Girl Scout store.
C: To buy Girl Scouts?

Monday, September 8, 2008

Proud or Embarrassed?

You Are 84% A Child of the 80s

There's hardly a moment of the 80s that you missed out on.

Was there ever a better decade? As if!

Saturday, September 6, 2008


I have received 2 blog awards recently, but have failed to post them!

First the most recent: from Jennifer at Flannel Hippos honored me with the "I love you this much" award! It is such a cute award! Jen's blog is really fun to read because we are great friends who rarely have time to see each other or even IM each other. We also have a lot in common with homeschooling 4 children, some are the same age. Please stop by her blog for a little visit.

Now to award it to 10 others!
Vegan Linda - even though I know that Jen already awarded it to her.
Stacy and Life in a house of 8 - Cuz with 6 kids, she is still more on the ball than anyone I know!
Barbara at Bless Us O Lord - I aspire to be as organized and together as she seems to be.
Elizabeth at In the Heart of my Home - Her blog inspires me in so many ways!
Melissa at Here in the Bonny Glen - How can anyone read her blog and not fall in love
Mimi at Mimi's Jewel Box - Cuz I love free stuff and she knows how to get it all!
Organizing Junkie - She really motivates me to purge purge purge!

Ok, so I do not really read 10 blogs - I just do not have time.

Thank you so much Mimi for the Arte y Pico Award, I am honored.
Passing it on to 5 friends:
Vegan Linda
Life in a house of 8
Organizing Junkie
Cottage Blessings - the cutest blog on the web!

Congratulations to the winners! I hope that everyone reading this will take the time to check out these fabulous blogs!

Winners, the award winners' rules are:
You have to pick 5 blogs that you think deserve this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also for contributing to the blogging community, no matter what language.

Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.

Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given
her or him the award itself.

The award-winner and the one who has given the prize must show the link of the “Arte y Pico” blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Twin funnies

Ok, I realize how totally out of date this blog is, and I promise to do a summer in review sometime soon. BUT - today both twins made me laugh and I wanted to share with you.

Me: Wondertwin A, please get the can of peacheso out.
WT A: I dont want these, I want peaches.
Me: Um, those are peaches.
WT A: NO, the squishy, juicey ones with a pit.

My twins are often dressed alike, usually in different colors. My older 2 sometimes dress alike for fun. Today, the big girls were wearing the same school uniform, and the littles were dressed the same, different colors. Later on, after playing in the sprinkler, the twins chose identical clothes. At this point WT C states, "hey, look we are twins." LOL She noticed they were dressed the same, so of course, they are twins.