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Showing posts from 2015

Summer Fun List

My kids are on year round school which means we have 3 separate breaks (we call them Fall, Spring, Summer) rather than one long summer vacation.  Each time we are off track we make a "fun list" of the activities we want to do!

Some breaks we have a huge list with activities for every day.  Other times just a handful of really cool things we want to do so that we can leave some spare time open for some spontaneous things.  (I am not spontaneous so we are working on increasing my ability to cope with spontaneity).

Here is our Summer Fun List:


Swim LessonsKnott's Berry FarmBackyard CampingIndividual Movie Nights (each of our girls will stay up late 1 night with mom and dad)Go to the BeachPlay date with Good FriendsSummer Reading Program at both librariesGo to an Angel's Baseball GameGo KayakingMake Hygiene Kits for the HomelessSister's Sleepover (the girls sleep in sleeping bags or on the trundles together)Aquarelle PaintingsMake Stepping StonesHave a Tea PartyGo for…

Playing Out Front

While talking with some friends about playing outside with our kids it dawned on me that kids today don't really play our front.  Some do - a lot.  The vast majority however don't play out front and in the area I grew up in there aren't really backyards to play in.

These friends were a bit shocked that I let my girls play out front.  And then I said the magic words: "Yea they play in the street all the time!"  That blew their socks off.

Our culture right now is one of caution, anxiety, and fear.  Should we eat organic or ingest chemicals, should we watch T.V. or not, which baby lotions are safe, should kids play on monkey bars they might break their arms.  I am grateful for this information era and all that we know because of course I want my kids to live long healthy lives.  Yet I feel burdened by the weight of all the "what ifs".

So yes I let my kids play outside and feel safe doing so.  I am always out there with them and they wear helmets anytime …

The True Meaning of Memorial Day

This weekend was Memorial Day weekend.  To many people this means parties, barbecue, family, maybe a beach trip or a vacation.  All of these things are good, joyous even.  However, this weekend is not about the start of summer, good weather, or even time with family.  This weekend is time to reflect on life, liberty, freedom, happiness, and so much more.  Sure parties, vacations, and family time are all related to those things but why do we have these things?  How are we free?  We are free in large part due to the sacrifice of our military past and present.  Technically to those who died for our liberty, peace, and freedom.

Our Girl Scout troops gathered this weekend to place flags on every grave in our local National Cemetery.  Joining them (or rather we joined) over 1,000 people honored the sacrifice and strife these people went through for themselves and for us.  The sight of a National Cemetery covered in American flags is profoundly moving.  Kids, adults, veterans, everyone was m…

Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy

Recently our 5 year old under went a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy and I thought I would share some tips and tricks of the process - you know in case you find yourselves in our situation.  Now first and foremost none of this is medical advice.  This is maternal advice - advice from one mom to another.

Prepping -

We didn't tell our daughter she was having surgery.  She loathes doctors and hospitals and can stress herself out pretty well.  Literally she didn't even ask at the surgery center so we just let it be.  She did great this way and has not questioned us.  Her older sister however was sad that we didn't tell her.  Hindsight - I would do it exactly the same way!

Post Surgery:

We were told she would need a cold liquid(ish) diet for 24 hours.  What we weren't told is that she shouldn't eat anything with red dye for 3-10 days after the procedure.  This is in case of bleeding - we need to be able to spot it as blood not food right away.

Shaved ice
Jello (no red)

Sunday Dinner!

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Welcome back friends and readers!  Above is our first Sunday Dinner of this new challenge albeit late.  Man oh man was it delicious!

Thankfully my husband likes to cook so after 4 hours at cookie booths with my daughters I came home to this delicious dinner.  Yes I am blessed and maybe a wee bit spoiled!

The recipe for the pork is here. (It is similar but not quite the same ours has cooked bacon in the salsa).

The potatoes are just mashed with roasted garlic, green onions and fresh cilantro.  They were awesome!

Asparagus and bacon go so well together - I never liked asparagus until we started experimenting with different cooking methods.  This is just salt and pepper dressed asparagus wrapped in bacon and grilled for 20-30 minutes.  My husband is a happy man now that we eat asparagus - he loves it!

What did you have for your family dinner this week?

- Ash of All Trades

Exercise For Your Sanity

A year ago this weekend I ran my first (and probably last) Marathon!  Yes, 26.2 miles!  It was horribly awful and yet exhilarating and fulfilling at the same time. 

I LOVE running.  I did not even like running 26.2 but it has been my life goal for a long time.  In preparation for running a whole marathon I started slow.  Couch to 5k style then up to a 10k finally I ran a half marathon.

Let me be clear - I am a runner at heart - I started at age 8 inspired by my dad and his running and ran through high school.  During college I ran off and on however once I had my first daughter exercise in general took the back seat.  Faster forward 6.5 years and I was ready to lose the baby weight.  But something happened this time around and losing the baby weight became second fiddle to so much else.

Each of these races proved difficult but thrilling.  Each one was a stepping stone to my ultimate goal.  Every race had its own preparation and took step after step of grueling training.  Missing fam…

Sunday Dinner Challenge

Welcome back and boy has this week been crazy!  Our life is pretty jam packed full with three little ones and the activities we feel are important in our lives.  In fact today was the second weekend of Girl Scout Cookie Booth Sales which means we still have 4 weeks where we will eat drink and breathe cookies because I am the troop coordinator for both troops.

My pledge to my family during this cookie sale is that I would not let it affect our dinner plans.  Each year something always comes up and I end up dealing with cookies during dinner time.  No bueno.  We eat dinner as a family 95% of the time.  The other 5% is because we have a sports/extracurricular activity and during that time whoever is home eats together.  During cookie time the ratios were reversed!
We eat at the table as a family and we all eat the same thing.  Shocker right.  That doesn't happen very often anywhere anymore.  Especially with a somewhat picky husband and a very picky 7 year old.  Middle C eats quite w…

Kids Goals

Well I am back again and this time with a post on kids goals!  Yep we included our kids in our 2015 goal planning session.  We began talking about goals at Christmas time and kept the talk up until the 1st of January - then we sat down and wrote down our goals.

Here are their goals:

Big C age 7-8 in 2015
1. Run a 5k
2. Learn to read at 11th grade level
3. Reach 100 miles for the 100 mile club
4. Earn the Presidents Service Award
5. Make 50 Rainbow Loom Bracelets and Sell 20 of them.


Middle C age 5-6 in 2015
1. Learn to rollerblade
2. Learn to swim
3. Run a 1 mile kids fun run
4. Learn to read at 2nd grade level
5. Earn the President's Service Award

Little C age 2-3 in 2015
1. Learn letters and numbers
2. Learn colors and shapes
3. Learn to ride a tricycle/scooter
4. Start a class like gymnastics, ballet, etc.
5. Have 500 books read to her.


They are so excited about their goals and have been working almost everyday on at least one of them.  Little C got herself up and dressed on t…

New Year New Goals!

Normally taking down my Christmas decorations bums me out.  I look forward to the holidays and family time then bam it is over!  This year I am really enjoying taking down the decorations, deep cleaning some rooms in the house and planning for a really awesome 2015.

Throughout the year of 2014 I felt like I wasn't accomplishing a whole lot.  Each time I did a project or finished something it felt great but I didn't feel like I was getting anywhere.  In hindsight it is because I didn't sit down and set any written goals.  I didn't feel like I was getting anywhere because I didn't have a checklist to cross off.  The only goal I felt I had accomplished was running a full marathon and even then I wasn't thrilled with my time. 

But last year was a great year and I thoroughly enjoyed our more "free spirit" functioning - in fact it is probably how we thrived during such a busy time full of ups and downs and lots of personal growth I just want to track my p…

2014 Recap and Where Did Time Go?

Wow it has been a long time since I have last blogged and a lot has happened since December 2011!   I honestly thought I hadn't blogged in only maybe a year not 3!!!!!!!!!  I now have 3 beautiful daughters (actually I stopped blogging when morning sickness hit with my third)! Big C is in 2nd Grade, Middle C is in Kindergarten, and my baby is already 2!  Time sure does fly! I am sadly going to skip over 2012 and 2013 and just do a recap of 2014. 

2014 was an amazing year for our family with a lot of growing and doing.  While I feel that we were ridiculously busy; in hindsight everything had meaning and shaped us in some way.  When we do have down time (like the last week and a half) we almost don't know what to do with ourselves.  I am going to try and remind myself during this next year that keeping busy is a good thing (as long as it doesn't take over) - it makes us appreciate our down time so much more and it helps keep us away from things like laziness, too much TV, an…