Thursday, December 31, 2009

This and That...

Thought I'd share a few pictures/happenings from the break/second half of the month! Not much excitement, but it is a little bit fun!

Austin & Bayley decided that they needed to play Little Red Riding Hood (Such Imagination) while waiting for grandma to get home from work the day after we got done with school... so... Bayley found my red fluffy robe that we managed to fashion into a hood and cape.... notice the "wolf" at her feet...

And we had to figure out a costume from "Grandma" to wear in the bed... so...

voila! We have a scarry blond wig, ruffled pillowcase, Aunt Daye's glasses, and... I think it worked pretty good... just needed a flannel gown, but I'm not quite sure I could have gotten him to go for that!

During our Tea-party trip, Aunt Jane sent us back a gingerbread house kit to build, so... behold the masterpiece!

After being harassed about the construction, I think we've decided that we need to let my brother build his own next year... anyone got any good recipes or a mold?

And finally, Miss Priss has discovered what an awesome back yard she has to play in! I have finally found something the kids like better than Lucy, but it's only at their house, so they are still fighting over who gets to hold her... the poor dog isn't loved at all! In addition to exploring outside, she had developed quite an attachment to a few of her toys... especially Mr. Bear! She can be found hauling him around just as much as she chews on him... too bad he's bigger than her!

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and that God Blesses you and yours with a happy, healthy 2010!

Friday, December 11, 2009

They Ain't Right!

One of my favorite comedians has always been Bill Cosby. Not only is he one of the funniest people ever, most of his humor is something that the whole family can enjoy! One of the things I loved to watch of his was the show "Kids Say the Darndest Things" but these days, we've got all the entertainment we need in the back seat of the car.

Picture this... 4 hours in the car with Austin & Bayley. Here's just a few snippets of the conversation... (Most of the entertainment came from Austin)

Mom: "Why didn't you eat your hamburger?"
Austin: "Acause I don't like ham"
Mom: "well, it's not ham."
Austin: "well, I don't like burger either"

During a stop to get gas and change drivers... I looked in the back window and had to open the door to make sure I saw what I thought I saw... Austin in the back seat in his underwear...
Me: "Austin, did you take your pants off?"
Austin: "I got hot..."
Moments later...
Austin: (Answering the cell phone while I'm pumping gas and mom's paying) "Hey Aunt Jane, we're at the jas station... you know, getting gas.
And as I related this conversation to Mom...
"Aunt Daye, I know it's a GAS station" (very deliberately saying it right)

Austin " I can't wait to get to Aunt Jane's house, so I can sit in her "sazJING " chair and get a "sazje". (Note, for those who don't speak Austin-ese... this is a massage chair)

And Last but definately not least, after we announced that we were about 10 minutes from Aunt Jane's house and still on the interstate...

Austin: "Bayley, lets look for signs that say Aunt Jane's House, you look on your side and I'll look on mine!"

I'm sure that these are some of those "funnier if you were there" moments but at the end of a stressful week, I have to admit that towards the end, I was driving down I-75 laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes!

They just ain't right... but I sure do love-em!!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Birthday Party

For some crazy reason, my brother and sil decided to have both of their kids between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Add this into an already hectic schedule and birthday parties become something of a scheduling issue. My Aunt Jane scheduled our holiday tea for the weekend before Bayley's birthday and the Christmas parade was the weekend after Austin's.

Mom and I were trying to figure out how in the world we were going to fit it all in when she came up with the plan to have a party at my house the night of the Christmas parade for both of their birthdays! Amazingly, both kids went for the idea since this plan let them go with us to the tea party and they love going to Aunt Jane's. In addition, they each got to have their own cake and family party.

Austin's Family Party... complete with trick candles!
So... we scheduled Bayley & Austin's Hotdog Roast! Unfortunately, the weather made having a fire outside rather difficult (windy and wet), so we grilled them inside and after busting the elmo pinata and playing hopscotch, we settled down inside to have some fun. Bayley got to have her friend Sidney spend the night and Austin went home with Sidney's brother, Austin. (I know, I know... kinda hard to keep straight) Just thought I'd post a few pictures of their party... and the slumber party that followed for the girls!

Mrs Marti brought Floam... I was so excited! (NOT)

Lucy, Sidney & Bayley with the contents of the "Fancy Hat Boxes"

Add some dresses and you've got some pretty ladies!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

If at first you don't succeed.... wait a few years!

Every Thanksgiving, my Aunt Jane always makes the rolls. Her yeast rolls are about the best ones I know of (besides Texas Roadhouse) and they are normally the first thing to disappear off the buffet table! We always rave about them and she keeps saying how simple they are to make. And every year, she tells me that next year, she's going to "pass the torch" and that I will have to make them. I actually did try once... a very long time ago, but the results were so disasterous that I decided if it was up to me to make them, we would just have to do without rolls!

After Carrie's attempt to make homemade cinnamon rolls, and another threat from Aunt Jane to quit making them, I mustered up my courage and decided that I might actually try to make them on an occasion where if they failed, no one would be expecting anything! So... on the Friday night after Thanksgiving, after conferring with mom and Aunt Jane about ingredients, I began my yeast roll making adventure. Here's the recipe and a few pictures of the process/results!

Aunt Jane's Rolls

In a large bowl (and I do mean large) combine:

3 cups buttermilk
1 pkg dry active yeast (not the rapid rise kind)
3 cups All Purpose flour

After mixing well, add:

3 well beaten eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

Slowly work 4 cups of flour into the mixture until it gets extremely difficult to stir. Notice the bowl change... my dough got a little too big for the bowl I started with! After mixing in all your ingredients, set in a warm place and allow the dough to rise for one hour. Cover and refrigerate over night.

Using plenty of flour, knead the dough until it is slightly rubbery. For those of you who aren't familiar with the process of kneading, my aunt gave me the following instructions "Press down, make a quarter turn, fold over and press down again." Keep kneading until you have incorporated about one more cup of flour into the dough. Make sure your rolling pin and surface stay covered with flour or your dough will stick to everything.

Roll the dough out very thin. If you don't roll it think enough, then you will have fewer rolls, but they will be huge and possibly a little doughy. Use a biscuit cutter to cut them into circles. Since I didn't have a biscuit cutter, I had to improvise and used a jar ring to cut them. It actually worked pretty good.

After you cut your circles, dip them into melted butter, fold in half and place on a cookie sheet. Make sure to leave some room between them so that they have room to rise. If you do this correctly, you should have at least two cookie sheets of rolls.

Cover with a towel and sit the rolls in a warm place to rise for three or four hours before you bake them. I had to put them on top of my stove while I was baking the stuffing and pie to have the room warm enough to make the dough rise.

And Ta-Da! The finished product... I still need a little practice, but Eric and Daddy both said they were more than edible.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

We Love Lucy!

No, I'm not talking about Lucille Ball- who is one of the funniest females ever- but the sweet little puppy that joined our brood last Tuesday. About a month ago, Mrs. Sheila called me and asked did I want a papillon puppy.

What the heck is a papillon? Well, as Austin will tell you, Papillon is french for butterfly. (Yes, we taught him some french) And papillons (or toy continental spaniels) are known for their large ears that look something like a butterfly.

Of course, our puppy, tends to look more like a miniature border collie with her black and white markings, but we sure are crazy about her. When we traveled with her to my aunt's house for Thanksgiving, we had to time how long Bayley and Austin got to hold her to keep from having a fight!

All in all, she's pretty sweet!