Archive | October 2015

Three things Thursday 

 Haunted hay ride date night  
Belle costume!

Halloween party!

  Spooky pizza 


This was originally a bit of an accident post but I’m going to fix it up now for Pinning purposes.

This week I tried to Halloween up the lunches and snacks and dinners, all the ideas came from Pinterest but way too often they are just a picture and no explanation so here is how I did it;

  1. American cheese ‘Jack-o-lantern’
    1. Supplies a slice of cheese and a sharp knife and a cutting board.
    2. Cut out a few shapes from the cheese (feed them to a child at breakfast)
    3. put the cheese on top of whatever else you pack.  (Mine are on top of a napkin filled with pretzels, I wrap up the pretzels to keep them fresh)
  2. Ghost popcorn
    1. Supplies a bag, a sharpie, ribbon or twist tie and popcorn
    2. Draw on the bag first
    3. Fill with popcorn and tie with a ribbon

3. Mummy Dogs – there are actually tons of videos on this.  For the record I used scissors to cut the dough and all wrapping was done by a 3 and 5-year-old.  I added blue sprinkles post cooking.

Living far

**warning – self-centered sadness to follow – skip if that isn’t your thing**

Its been on my mind and I’m not sure how to even bring it up but once I write it hopefully it can get out of my brain…

Yes, I choose to move.  That means I can’t go to the bar with my highschool or college friends.  Apparently that also means that I am removed from consideration on things like weddings.

True, I can’t make every wedding (even if I did live close).  I don’t even vaguely expect invitations to weddings of people I don’t have contact with, or, if the wedding is tiny or family only etc just because we were friends way back.  I understand completely.  The thing that gets me is when I see group pictures from a wedding of a friends group that I was a part of, that I have fairly frequent interaction with….  etc.

So many people just walk away from friends when they move and I suppose they feel that’s what other people do too.  I don’t.  I’ll get over it, I understand.  I’m not going to sever a positive relationship because I value that relationship even if the other person(s) don’t.

Enough on this depressing thing.  Nobody likes a sad person – To try and end on an up note here is today’s Halloween lunch and last night’s dinner.  What I can do in my life if focus on all the good people I get to meet and know here and all the true friends that have kept me in their lives (even if they know that I’ll probably decline the birthday party or BBQ in NY, its nice to be thought of)IMG_7054IMG_0313

Normal Today

I’m starting to really love time hop.  This app reinforces my tendency to compare now to last year or 4 years ago by literally telling me what I published in previous years.  Yesterday it noted a blog post and I semi-forgot what I wrote so I clicked.  When I read it I was transported to a time that I thought I would never forget, a time I have forgotten…  I wrote the post because I loved the messy snapshots that were with all the photos of baby Lars.  The unposed, un fixed.  That day I dissected a snapshot and I’m so glad I did because yesterday I remembered so much that I had forgotten.

Today I want to try again.  This probably isn’t too interesting to anyone else unless you also happen to be in the same situation as me, or, ever wondered what the stay at home mom house looks like at 11:30am…


This is the same corner of the house as 4 years ago but instead of a 1 year old Zoe you can see a 3 year old Fiona.  A person who didn’t even exist yet!  Instead of the constant interaction of the 1 year old crowd, Fiona is upstairs playing and fairly indipendant – I actually had to call her to be in the picture and she was busy ‘reading to her babies’.  She doesn’t really let me get away with doing my own thing for long, I need to be on call at all times for potty help, doll dressing, to look at something, or to kiss whatever part of her body she has hurt.

I feel like I have to say that our kitchen and stairs are suffering from us being away for the weekend and we just dumped things in the hall.  But yes… it is rare to have a perfect kitchen in our house and this is all about the real way not the way I like to see in pretty pictures.

The detail in the last post hooked me because I know I was writing totally mundane details but 4 years later I was so happy for the reminder.  Today you can see Halloween decorations up – the kids actually leave them alone and are glad of the glowing pumpkins.  Zoe helped make the paper flowers and the only decoration that gets messed with are the little Halloween ducks you can hardly see on the ledge.  I also like the look of my nice wood stairs and ledge, way better than builder grade carpet that was impossible to get clean.  I don’t miss that stuff!

The table has some breakfast still, Fiona and I eat second shift breakfast.  We send the bigger kids off to school and we eat before we go off to whatever we are doing.  We go out almost every day and this day we were out to a workout by 9:30 so it was an eat and run day.  Same goes for the cereal bags on the floor, I feel like I should leave them there, but I promise, they do go away daily.  The table also has a pile of school product – I’m not quite sure what to call the ‘bounty’ of paper we get daily from school but I sit every afternoon with them and go through it all.  Sometimes they love the snuggle and attention and tell me about each paper, other days they are too into playing and I peruse it solo.  I pull out the most important things and the rest gets recycled.

Speaking of recycling… the walmart bag on the back of the chair is full of walmart bags.  I’m bursting with the things and I’m never sure what to do with them.  They are not recyclable, I can only use so many trash bags and I hate throwing them away to just fill a landfill.  The other bag on the floor was just from that morning.  How it got on the floor I don’t know but it had a set of riding gloves in it.  Amazon prime has made us so spoiled with things arriving daily 🙂

The bag on the chair is from a playdate from last week.  It has moved from in the car to the hall and from the hall to storage but then it was used to pack animals for the trip and when it ripped (pre trip) it was abandoned.  I like to let the kids pack themselves, they are learning about space and what is good for packing into etc.  That bag now is holding the newest batch of recycling, waiting for a child chore time to bring it out.

And I want to remember the things you don’t see too.  There are no boosters, they rejected them a few weeks ago.  There are no sisters, they are in school every day.  There are no sippy cups or bottles or multiple sets of spoons because I need to feed someone.  There are no toys, no highchairs, no exersaucers…  I’m happy for every step forward but there is still a fond memory of the other things too.

My days now are busy in a new way.  I go workout 3 days a week at 9:30 and except for a rare day we have playdates the other 2.  We do school ‘stuff’ when the bigger girls get home but Fiona likes to play school in her room with her animals and barbies.  We do some housework together but usually I tidy wherever she wants to be and get the other things when she naps or is playing.  This is my last year with a full time child at home so next years ‘normal’ will be radically different again.

I don’t know if you will take my advice but take a picture of your life with no edits, you will be happy in about 4 years 🙂

18 hours of thinking time

This past weekend Lars and I and the kids and two friends drove to Minot ND and back.  For those not in the midwest, that is around a 9h trip each way but it is a very very easy 9 hours.  The road is good, there are 3 turns, there are no cities or things that might cause a slow down (barring utter craptastraphy).  There are enough gas and potty options and with 4 adults nobody even got burned out driving.

The kids are now what I would call expert road trippers.  They don’t ask for tons of potty stops, they know we are not stopping, and more often than not they get food on the drive.  They are well trained enough that when we were talking about dinner options on the way home they suggest Subway because it was easy to eat in the car and ‘keep moving’.  They all napped and played and were 99% good the entire ride.  They were really 99% good the entire trip!  We visited friends with kids just their age AND a ‘big’ kid that was willing to play with them too.  I hardly had to parent the whole time and I even got to sleep for 9 hours straight – something I have not done in recent memory

We had a great time with the visit on the whole.  It met the criteria of us being there longer than it took to travel so good start.  It also had a laid back agenda and that is nice for a change since we usually try to cram 10x what we should do into any given situation.  In the evening we had a mini party with a bunch of other friends from the area that we don’t normally see/spend much time with and we played a very fun and silly game.

Other than the random meandering discussions during the visit there was also the solid 18 hours of travel to THINK.  I love that time, time where I can’t be doing anything else – I can’t clean or work out or read Facebook (much), I can’t really even read because I dislike the feeling of puke.  I’ve planned so many things in my head during various road trips, the perfect tent, gardens (didn’t happen, probably because I drive a lot and leave my house for a month), book ideas, what-ifs, discussions of political situation… you get the picture.

Upon our return my brain is teaming with a few projects that NEED to happen

  1. settled on a book to work on.  Not the only story in my brain but the one I talked about with a friend out there sparked him to want to co write and with that push we are off.
  2. We need to start a YouTube channel for SCA fighting discussion, this is to help all the people in far away places get feedback.  Record your fight, send it in, Lars and/or Konrad will do a reply video about what they see.  I can see this going all football style with drawing on the screen and all that.  Hopefully it will be helpful
  3. A week of cool Halloween food and plans all mapped out <– this is the one that is most immediate and easy

So now I’m home, sent kids off to school, got back to the workout thing, then walked to force nap and now I have a list of items like bake bread and find kitchen and post blog (and book planning) so see you tomorrow!

Thankful Thursday

More than 3 things this week.  Its been a mostly good week (glue eating aside)

#1 they say if you have your health…  Well, I’m healthy and getting a bit more muscle.  It’s a slow thing since I’m really doing more overall muscle things and squats (but I’m not putting my posterior on the internet)  This shows my 6-month change


2. This is a project that took some thinking – I take cool pictures every year of the costumes that I work hard on but then they just live in my computer.  This year I printed them all out and put them up!  Each is just on a piece of scrapbook stock paper and clipped on so they are movable as I feel like rearranging.  So far it has captivated Fiona who spends time every day ‘talking’ to all the pictures since a good portion is on her level.


3.  Speaking of costumes – here is ‘red superhero’.  Most easy costume ever!  The arm things are socks with the foot cut off, and, I made a skirt from tied tuile.  The other parts are purchased and super re-usable. Best thing is she loves it.


4. Told you Halloween would be prominent…  This set of things were snacks for the Daisy troop and they loved them, they will also be reprised in the next 2 weeks lunches.  Fiona was the helper and filled all the popcorn bags, helpers get to eat all that gets spilled right?



5. I made this cake as an answer to the pot luck inspiration ‘rescue’.  As if D&D isn’t nerdy enough I asked the DM to give us a theme for the meal each time that is a hint for the game.  So far its been fun!  I searched the internet and nobody seemed to have a lifesaver cake out there so I made this up from known parts.  It is 1-part ‘jelly’ roll (cake baked super thin on a cookie sheet on parchment paper), 1-part rainbow cake (divide the white cake batter and color, then, stripe the colors onto the cookie sheet), 1-part whipped cream to roll it up with and finally, 1-part lifesaver gummy candy.  I think the long thin IKEA tray also helps, that tray always makes me happy 🙂


6. Last but not least a new game….  We don’t go out much so any ‘entertainment’ budget can go to fun games.  This one is a new twist on the game Pandemic that we love.  It is an ongoing game so you need a group that will keep playing over time AND it evolves like a choose your own adventure novel.  It has 12 ‘acts’ and so many cool things that I can’t wait to play.  Bonus, each game only takes about 1.5 hours so no huge commitment 🙂


This weekend we are taking a road trip that I hope will be full of fun.  I’m looking forward to seeing the western friends!