Friday, December 30, 2011

16 months

16 months already.  Happy day to our little love bug.

He is SUCH a mama's boy right now.  Some days I love it, some days it proves to be a bit overwhelming!  Owen is turning into quite the chatterbox, always jabbering on and really becoming quite clear in his speech {mommy, car, ge-ge (Chinese for older brother), daddy, treat, tree, cookie, cracker, gung (part of Taiwanese for grandpa), ah-ma (Taiwanese for grandma), pea, moo, baa, moon and more that I probably can't think off!}, loves reading, stepping up and down on things, playing with his trains/cars, eating {he is a total grazer, eating all day long.  Already out-eats his brother}.   His thing lately is that he runs and runs, but often trips and falls.  Most of the time, he does NOT put his hands out to break his fall, so we've had quite a number of fat, bloody lips and noses!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Ham

You HAVE to try this ham.  Super moist, delicious, and ridiculously easy!  I cut the recipe in half, and made an 8lb ham for our Christmas dinner with family.  Even the my brother-in-law, who generally doesn't say much, commented on how good it was! :) 

  • 15 lbs whole bone-in ham (I prefer Cooks SuperTrim brand)
  • 1 lb brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup yellow mustard
  • aluminum foil
  1. In a medium size mixing bowl, mix yellow mustard and brown sugar until you have a thick"paste.:
  2. Take all wrappers off of ham and trim away excess fat.
  3. Line baking pan with Aluminum foil.  Place an EXTRA lining underneath the foil that you will place the ham on, because the paste/juices WILL leak out.  Clean up is a breeze! :)
  4. Place ham on foil and spread brown sugar/mustard paste on top.
  5. Fold and seal foil.
  6. Do not open again until ham is done.
  7. Bake at 350° for 4 hours.
  8. Let set for about 1 hr then carve.
  9. One of the best tasting hams you will ever have!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Blessed Christmas

Hope you all had a safe, peaceful {if you don't have kids running around!}, and enjoyable holiday surrounded by those you love.  I wouldn't have it any other way.

Thanks to Pinterest for the Christmas card idea! :)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Another milestone

With every little milestone, it's so obvious that Owen is growing up, and not my little baby anymore!  Today was his first hair cut!  He's had trims before, but this was his first official cut.  He did so well.  Sat in the chair, and just absorbed it, until his hair stylist went to answer the phone.  How DARE we make him wait! :)  I'm sure going to miss his full head of little curls in the back, though.  Boo least HE was happy about the cut.....

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thursday Deals 12/15/11

1.  Get a USB Sync and Charging cable (for iPhone users only) for only $0.65 SHIPPED on Amazon right now.  List price is $12.60, so go QUICK!

2. Ladies, get a FREE sample of Poise Hourglass Shape here.

3. Use this coupon for $1.00 off Duck Brand tape, then head to Wal-mart where they sell Duck brand packing tape for around $1.00.  You could get a FREE roll of packing tape!

4. Tomorrow, Dec. 16, is FREE SHIPPING DAY.  Go here to see a list of participating merchants.

5. FREE Fries at Burger King tomorrow.  Details here.

6. FREE sample of Lanacane Anti-Chaffing Gel here.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Window paint

What a great way to occupy my bought me enough time to do a quick clean up without them following close behind and un-doing all of it. :)  Put some finger paint in a ziploc bag, tape it a window, Voila!  Not messy either! :)  {Thanks to Pinterest for the idea!}

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


A week ago, I got my first ever concussion.....From a 15 month old!!  I was laying on the floor playing with the boys as usual.  Owen sat on my back, and then leaned down to hug me, but banged his head into mine.  He was fine.  I was concussed. Glad Blake was home when it happened, but since he had to go back to work, I ended up calling my mom over and canceling all of my piano lessons for the afternoon.  Crazy!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Homemade Microwave Popcorn

Seriously, you all have to jump on this band wagon.  Save your health AND your pocket book.  Blake even says it's pretty good {and he is a true junk food lover!}!

Plain old brown paper lunch bag {I actually asked for them at our local grocery store, and they didn't have any to SELL me, so they just gave me a bunch at the counter!  Score!}

1/2 c. popcorn kernels

Place popcorn kernels in brown paper bag.  Fold top of bag over twice to seal.  Place bag UPRIGHT in microwave.  Microwave on high about 3 minutes.  Stop the microwave when popping slows to 1-2 pops per second.  I melted a tablespoon of butter and poured it over top.  Shake it up, add some salt.  Voila!  Delicious!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

15 Months

Owen turned 15 months old yesterday.  15 months!  Before I know it, he'll be 15 YEARS.  Much will change by then, I'm sure.  He won't want to hug me every second of the day {and he's the best hugger!} and I'm sure he'll have a much larger vocabulary.  He loves to jibber jabber now, but is really starting to put together a lot of words!  In the past couple of days, he has been using MILK a lot.  I think that's his new one. He'll often mock us when we speak, so we're getting closer!  I imagine Owen will be bigger than his brother some day, so Isaac takes advantage of that by just pushing and shoving him around right now.  Owen is tough though.  It rarely phases him!  He is up to 9 teeth now {Maybe 10, he does NOT let me put my fingers in his mouth to feel his gums!), one of his canines poked through on Nov. 22ish.  Almost half way to a full mouth of baby teeth!  I hope Owen never loses his love for making things go.  He is so content to push around his tractors, or "drive" his cars.  When he's driving on a learner's permit at 15....I'll probably wish he didn't want to go!   I wish for him to always remain inquisitive.  He likes to figure things out.  Puzzles, magnets on the Thomas the Tank Engine Trains, fitting one block inside another, playing with his ball popper/ball and hammer/ball and boat toys.  I hope he keeps that up! 

One thing I do hope he loses....his fascination with the television.  This kid will turn the TV ON...and so, I politely ask for him to turn it OFF, which he does very happily for now.  Someday, that won't be the case!

He's our short-tempered, happy-go-lucky, love bug.  He's our world {Isaac's too!}.  Happy 15 months big-guy.

Thursday Deals - 12/1/11

1.  Use this Kohl's coupon for  an extra 20% off your purchase!  Expires 12/5.

2. FREE sample of Breathe Right Extra here, plus you get a coupon! :)

3. FREE 2012 Tribute to America Calendar.  Get yours here.

4. FREE sample of John Frieda Full Body Shampoo and Conditioner here.

5. FREE Fries at Burger King on Dec. 16.  Details here.

6. Grab this coupon for Sears photo studio.  Good for a FREE photo shoot and custom wall portrait, plus 20% off the rest of your order.  Perfect for holiday photos!

7. FREE printable holiday and gift tags here.

8. Get a FREE CD of Sesame Street Songs and Stories here.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

I just want to remember

Isaac's little voice today.

We were driving home from a Thanksgiving gathering {I had to work with my cousin on some wedding music, so we pawned little Owen off on Grandma and Grandpa when they were left.}, Blake, Isaac, and me. 

Out of the blue, Isaac asks, "Where's Owen?"

And here is the ensuing conversation:

Dad:  We left him there
Isaac:  Why?
Mom:  We just forgot him, so we left him there.
**Isaac has a serious concerned look on his face**
Dad:  Should we turn around and go get him?
Isaac:  Yes.  We need to go get him!  We can't leave him there!
A few moments of silence
Isaac:  Are we going to go get him?  We have to go get Owen!
Mom:  It's ok, Isaac.  Owen is with Grandma and Grandpa.

Phew! :)  I guess I never have to worry about forgetting Owen anywhere for long as long as Isaac is around!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

So much to be thankful for today and every day.  Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

Here our my two little blessings with their turkeys from earlier this week:

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Turkey crafts

Hand and feet turkey crafts with a 3 year old and a 14 month old, both boys, should be considered a strenuous work out!  They turned out cute, though.  More pictures of the little monsters with their respective turkeys to come.  :)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Hamburger Thyroid

Well, my thyroid is still normal, but is measuring about 4.5" long and has a peculiar "hamburger-y"-looking texture. So, the plan for the future is just to "keep an eye on it."  Yep, I'm ok with that!  Thank you, Jesus!

Friday, November 18, 2011

I like this

I like this because this is just about sums me up lately!  Here's to the power of simple prayers! :)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thursday Deals 11/17/11

Sorry for the lack of posts this week.  Apart from being busy, I kind of have a lot on my mind...hopefully I'll feel better tomorrow!

1.  FREE sample of Barista Prima Coffeehouse K cups here.  You will need to enter campaign code: pywjrsmw

2.  FREE sample of Kleenex Cool Touch here.  It's a Sam's Club sample, so just put in any nine digit number for your membership ID.

3. Starbucks is offering up BOGO holiday drinks Nov. 17 - Nov 20.  Stop in between the hours of 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. and take advantage of this!  :)  Details here.

4. FREE sample of White's Premium dog food here.

5. FREE Martha Stewart Thanksgiving Recipes e-book download here, or you can get Mr. Food's version here.

6. FREE sample of Simply Right baby formula here.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thursday Deals - 11/10/11

Tomorrow is 11/11/11.  Woot!

1.  Are you in need of a Texas-shaped jar opener, FREE?  Get yours here.

2. Get a FREE sample of Calvin Klein's Beauty perfume here.

3. More Huggies diapers.  Get your FREE sample 2-pack here.  If you signed up for this already, you can still get another sample by using a different e-mail address.  Who doesn't have more than one these days? :) 

4. FREE Roast Beef Sandwich from Arby's on Veteran's day to all Vets and Active Duty Military!

5. FREE entree at Olive Garden to all Vets and Active Duty Military on Veteran's day!

6. FREE "Navigating your Health Benefits for Dummies" book here.

7. Like Lacoste Perfumes?  Get another FREE sample here.

8. Sign up to win 1 of 95 sets of Lincoln Logs that K'nex is giving away!  Love those things!

9. Get 100 FREE standard size postcards at Staples with this coupon.  Expires 11/12.

10.  FREE Joyce Meyer Ministries 2012 Calendar here.


Do you remember my hypothyroid problem when I was pregnant with Owen?  I stopped taking any medication at all for it the day I delivered.  I still get blood tests every 6 months to keep an eye on it, and by all accounts everything is normal.  Yay!  My thyroid was not broken, just a little overworked with the pregnancy!

Then, I saw the endocrinologist today for my 1 year check up.  My thyroid is enlarged, again {I had also been told it was enlarged when I was 40 weeks pregnant with ISAAC}.  It shrunk down when I was pg with Owen, and now it's enlarged again.  All this to say, my endocrinologist recommended an ultrasound done on it as soon as possible.  He is suspicious of a nodule.  If it's large enough, I will need to have a biopsy done to be sure it's not cancerous.  The likelihood of it being cancerous is only 5%, so that's thankful news, but SHIT.  Really?  I'm 29.  I have a huge, huge, huge chance that it's nothing at all, just a nodule.  But that 5% chance has my own mortality slapping me in the face.  That "C" word is everywhere, among all ages.  It's a sad reality folks.  I'm very hopeful, but can't help wondering about that little "what if?"

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Do you have your toilet paper going over or under?  As a general rule, I prefer over.   But, I swear I'm the last mom on the planet to figure out that if you put it under, it takes MUCH longer for babies and toddlers to make a mess with it!  So, I am temporarily converting to under - I'm tired to re-rolling my TP! :)

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thursday Deals - 11/3/11

1. FREE 62-page book, "Adventures in Parenting" here. Check it out!

2. Print this coupon, and head on over to your local Aveda for a FREE sample of Aveda's Damage Therapy line. Valid until June 30, 2012.

3. Ink Garden is offering 100 FREE double sided business cards right now with code 100FREE (one-sided cards) or 100FREE2 (double-sided cards).  You will have to pay about $4 in shipping, but still a fantastic deal!

4. College students, head on over and check out AMAZON STUDENT today!  All the benefits of Amazon Prime {which I LOOOOOOVE}, but FREE for 6 months, and a reduced cost if you want to keep on.  If you're not an Amazon regular, it's probably not for you, but you can read more about it here.

5. Add 10 points to your Gifts to Grow account with code CABRANDSVRNOV11.

6. 30% off at Coach Factory Outlet with this coupon.  Expires 11/13.

7. FREE copy of the book, "Take Back America" here.  You will need to click an e-mail confirmation link.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Try this

I'm really into drinking hot water lately. I love my chai tea/chai latte on cold fall days, but most of the time I don't have the time to make my own, and I don't want to spend the money on it (and I don't have the time to stop to pay for one!). I find that drinking hot water is equally as comforting, and much better for me. I have taken to having it as a late night treat, or as an after dinner refreshment, or a morning pick-me up. It's so easy to just turn on the tea pot while I'm getting ready and have a mug or two of hot water.

I've been warding off a sore throat for the past couple of days, the hot water goes a long way in making it feel better! Try it!

PS: Happy All Saints Day!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Trick-or-Treat from our little guys.  We had a blast, even though Isaac was suuuuuuuper slow and petered out after a couple of blocks!  Guess that's pretty exhausting for those little legs.  They both have plenty of candy to show for it though. :)  Isaac even surprised us all by being brave and sitting with some of the skeletons along the way.  It took him awhile to take his eyes off of the guy behind him though! :)

PS - Do you recognize Owen's costume? Sure you do! Isaac wore it in 2009 {see here}. Should we play a little game of who wore it better?

Sunday, October 30, 2011

14 Months

A couple of weeks ago, Owen *finally* had his one year appointment!  Stats:
22 lb. 10 oz.
37.5" long

He's seriously such a little man!!  Lately, he's fussy whenever I'm around because he only wants me.  Some days I feel like I have so many things to get done that I actually get semi-annoyed with his clingy-ness.  But then, he'll lay his head down on my shoulder and give me the biggest hug and all is forgiven!  :)

He loves his brother, and fights back whenever he's getting picked on.  He has a serious biting problem that we're working on!  I used to think it was just because he was teething {still is!}, he's popped two new bottom teeth in the last 10 days {for a grand total of 8 chompers!}, but I don't think that's it anymore.  He will run at Isaac with his mouth open, for the sole purpose of biting him.  A few days ago, he drew blood.......ugh!   He's still our litter eater.  Most days, he puts away more food than Isaac!  He must always carry around either a fork or a spoon {He calls both a spoon, but he actually prefers the fork!}.  He's really into his books lately {Especially his Thomas the Tank Engine books, Little Blue Truck, or any other alphabet-based, track-based, and any peek-a-boo/flap books}.  His new favorite word is "baby."  It's kind of ironic that he started saying "baby" all the time, because it was just earlier this month that I was a little sad about how quickly he grew up. He's not a baby anymore!  I try to treasure all of these moments because they don't stay this little forever.  We love you Owen-bubba!

Saturday, October 29, 2011


If you know me, you know I really don't like vampires!  It all started, believe it or not, with the old Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie. I was totally freaked out by her friend floating outside of her window!  But, I think Isaac is helping me get over it.  He sure is a cute little vampire!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thursday Deals - 10/27/11

1.  FREE sample of Chinese Tea here.

2. FREE sample of Simply Right Baby Care Infant Formula here.

3. FREE sample of Boss Orange Fragrance here.  3 scents to choose from!

4. We LOVE BioFreeze.  Blake sells it (and offers samples of it) and his office.  Go here and find out where you can get your FREE sample.  It's awesome!

5.  Eat at TGIFridays, bring in this coupon, and get one entree free when you purchase an entree at regular price and two drinks.  Or, get $5 off your order of $15 or more with this coupon.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Tuna Casserole

I haven't put up a recipe in awhile.  Here's one we tried out a few weeks ago.  Blake gave it an A- and he doesn't even like tuna!  Our boys devoured it, and our friend, Dawn, gave it the thumbs up as well.  I'm posting it with the edits I made, but you can find the original recipe here.

1 (12 oz) pkg egg noodles
1/4 c. chopped onion
2 c. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 c. frozen green peas
2 (6 oz) cans tuna, drained
2 (10.75 oz) cans condensed cream of mushroom soup
1/2 can of milk (use the cans from the soup)
5 oz sliced fresh mushrooms (I sliced up about 8 mushrooms)
1 cup crushed Ritz or Town House crackers
2 T melter butter

Preheat oven to 425 F.  Cook pasta in boiling water for 8-10 minutes or until al dente.  Drain.

In a large bowl, thoroughly mix noodles, onion, ONE (1) cup of cheese, peas, tuna, soup, milk and mushrooms.  Transfer to a 9x13 in ch baking dish.  Put remaining 1 c. of cheese on top.

Melt butter in microwave and pour over crushed crackers and mix until coated. Spread over top of casserole.  Bake for 15-20 minutes at 425F until cheese is bubbly, and cracker crust is lightly browned.   Enjoy!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Music geek part 2

Other musicians, you will appreciate this. :)  I couldn't help myself when I saw this cartoon.  I knew immediately that it was blog worthy!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Thursday Deals - 10/20/11

Owen grew his #7 tooth today!

 1. Get a FREE Cheese Quesadilla at Denny's with this coupon.

2. FREE sample of Aveeno Living Color Shampoo and Conditioner here.

3. Try out InkGarden for free, using code ForFree on select products.  Shipping and handling not included. Details here.

4. In honor of the International Day of Prayer, you can get 2 FREE "One with them" wristbands.  More here.

5. Bring your kids to your local CVS this Sunday, October 23 for their Halloween Party and Costume Event.  All kids in costume will receive a FREE $5 gift pack!  Details here.

6. 40% off one regular priced item at Hobby Lobby with this coupon.  Expires 10/22.

7. Ladies, FREE sample of Carefree liners here.

8. FREE sample of Hugo Boss perfume here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Music geek

One of my piano students brought me an entire bag of "The Etude" magazine.  The published dates for the magazines in my possession range anywhere from 1903 to 1951.  They have a church musician section that I'm pretty fascinated with reading, as well as checking out some of the actual compositions they have printed directly in the magazine, the advertisements, and all of the music schools they have listed.  Just amazing!  My favorite cover, so far, is the one from 1918, during WWI.  We totally need a call back to the arts.  Somewhere along the line, we lost the importance of the arts in our lives.  I'm totally geeking out over this stuff, but I love it!

 "Music will help us win the war.  Music in our homes keeps courage in our hearts."  -September 1918

Fight club

Well, not really......but my boys sure know how to make my hair turn gray.  I love them, I truly do, but there are days where they do nothing but this,  Fun, right?

Someday, I hope they see this video and laugh at themselves!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

What is a globe?

Don't know?  Isaac can tell you.  And, a good friend of mine tells me that this is all you have to know to pass Kindergarten in the state of Nebraska.  Nice!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Thursday Deals - 10/13/2011

1.  Free sample of pack of Breath Right Strips here.

2. Bath and Body Works is getting a free Be Enchanted lotion this weekend, Oct. 14-16, in-stores and online.  Details here.

3. FREE sample of Mary Kay Timewise Microdermabrasion set here.

4. Get your FREE debt-free holiday handbook here.  Love this one! :)

5. FREE sample of Lacoste Perfume for Men, here.

6. Ladies, choose your FREE Playtex sample, here.

Monday, October 10, 2011

In living color

This picture does not do the tree in our backyard justice.  It is an awful lot of leaves to rake up though. Good thing you are just gorgeous, tree!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Punctuation saves lives

I'm generally a fan of good grammar.  This just cracks me up!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Isaac is 3!

It's hard to believe that 3 years has passed so quickly.  Rest assured, being his parents has been the best adventure yet.


Isaac, I hope you never lose your sense of creativity.  Explore.  Create.  Line things up.  Always hold on to your passion for reading, it will take you places unimaginable!  Seek out adventures, but be safe - tractors and four-wheelers are only the beginning.   Keep dancing like no one is watching and continue to sing at the top of your lungs.  Such joy!  Goofy is good.  Keep hugging your brother {and any future siblings}, because they will be your best friends for life.  Always pick flowers {weeds/grass} for Mom.  I love it!  When you're older, don't be afraid to come home because, forever and always, we will love you to the moon and back.

Happy Birthday to our Biggie-Bigs!


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Thursday Deals - 10/6/2011

1.  FREE sample of Fabreezy Laundry Detergent here.  It is made with less chemicals, so it's supposedly better for your clothes, without sacrificing the clean factor.  We shall see.

2. The FREE Huggies Snug & Dry diaper samples are available again.  It's from Sam's Club, but you don't need the member number to request it.  If you've already registered for this sample through them, you are not eligible.  But, you can mail a pack to grandma and grandpa just in case you run out of dipes at their house! ;-)  Guess who just did that? :)  By the way, this sample is my 5th FREE pack of Huggies, for a total of TEN dipes!

3. Christie Brinkley is launching a skincare line.  You can get some FREE pre-launch samples here.

4. If you want to send a Halloween card, head on over to Tinyprints, create your own, and enter code TREAT11 to make it free.

5. Print this coupon for a FREE Hot 'n' Juicy single from Wendy's.

6. Get a FREE sample of Gas-X Thin Strips here.

7. Sign up for FREE sample of Arm & Hammer toothpaste here.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Farm work with my buddy in his buddy seat, makes driving the tractor so much more fun. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Isaac's 3rd birthday party

Isaac doesn't turn three until Friday, but we had a little party for him last weekend.  It was a beautiful day, and I think everyone had a wonderful time.  We chased stomp rockets, played with play-doh, ate lots of food, sang "Happy Birthday" and just enjoyed our day.  Isaac was very impressed with his cake {thank goodness because I was also pretty pleased with how it turned out!}.  Here are some pics from the his big day!


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Halloween prep

Well honestly, I hope Isaac wants to be something cuter than these for Halloween this year!

Friday, September 30, 2011

13 months

Good Morning Sunshine! Happy 13 months to our little Owen!


He's growing up so fast, and becoming more and more independent every day, especially with eating.  He manages to be independent yet a complete mama's boy at the same time.  I **love** his hugs.  He's the cuddliest boy.  His 6th tooth arrived on 9.10.11, and he's still holding steady at 6.  He's practically running already.  He is also continuing on his very naughty biting streak (only now, I think he's biting just to bite...not because of teething issues).  Every time we say, "Owen, no biting."  He will slap himself on the head.  I'm not sure what that's about, but it sure makes it hard for us to keep a straight face.  Tormenting his brother is a must - I swear he knows that Isaac will freak out if he even gets close something that Isaac has labeled as HIS.  Kind of funny sometimes, other times I just want to pull my hair out because it usually starts with Isaac freaking out, then Owen screaming at Isaac, then both of them CRYING.  Someday, they'll be buddies.  I know it!

Owen's favorite word right now:  Ball
His newest favorite food:  Apple Slices (not has to be the slice that he can bite himself).
Favorite things:  Putting on his shoes, hats, turning lights on/off, opening and closing doors, biting, tractors/cars/anything with wheels, and getting into pretty much anything that he can.

They grow up too fast.....don't forget to wait for me Bubba.  We love you sooooo much!