Thursday, May 31, 2007

Take me out to the T-ball game

We had a blast last night watching Anna's first t-ball game. All of the boys went and supported their sister (until the playground called .) Keep in mind that our baseball league has lots of kids and sometimes games have to be played at a school baseball diamond instead of the well groomed baseball field-- check out all of the weeds in the infield!!! I didn't realize that the judge of a "good" game for Anna was again different than the boys. The boys always thought it was a good game when their team scored more points than the other team. Not my Anna Grace.
The definition of a "good game" is when...

1. You show up and see another friend on the opposing team and feel the need to talk to them instead of "warm-up" before the game.
2. The two other girls, Madisen and Sylvie, show up to the game so you can talk to them on the bench when you're not in the field or batting.

The boys got so frustrated watching the t-ball players miss the ball or run to third base instead of first. I quickly reminded them that they had once played t-ball and looked just as silly. They stood in amazement and said "I did? I was that bad??"
My reply was "Absolutely." Enjoy the photos, but don't look at the weeds in the field! Jill

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Works for me.......

On Wednesdays I post a helpful tidbit that helps our life run a little more smoothly. Today's tip comes straight from our kitchen. It's our fast and easy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins. (It's even considered a weight watchers recipe if you don't add the choc. chips) Here's the recipe....
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
1 package Spice cake mix
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1/2 cup water
mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Pour dry cake mix into a bowl.
Add pumpkin and chocolate chips.
Add water. Stir.
Pour into mini muffin tins.
Bake for 10-12 minutes---YUM!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Gene has been passed...

All of my life my Mom has had an interesting "talent." She is able to walk through the yard and spot a 4 leaf clover from far away. How does she do that??? The talent has obviously skipped a generation because I haven't the time or patience to sit and look for one. But, Miss Anna has mysteriously come up with this "talent." She found her first 4 leaf clover recently and now is obsessed with finding them. It's a good thing!! Happy Tuesday! Jill

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day weekend fun

What a beautiful weekend we've had! Sunny and in the low 70's. Here's a little glimpse of our weekend...

We played a little of this.....

We added cocoa bean mulch to this...

planted these..........

Ben had a fever and sore throat so here he is...

but after this...

feels like doing this....

Fun weekend, huh? Jill

Friday, May 25, 2007

Plain and Simple

I tried a new casserole the other night. It used taquitos, refried beans, salsa and some cheese-yum! We all sat around the table and ate dinner--had to encourage Anna to at least try it, but she ate a little. Luke was helping to clear the table so I asked him.... "Luke, how did you like the new casserole?" He waited a short time and then announced "Mom-- I guess I'm just NOT a Casserole boy." Too funny. He's always liked everything plain and simple, and no sauce. Are we sure he's related to the rest of us???? Have a safe holiday weekend! and happy birthday today to my Dad in Illinois!!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Girls are different

Anna had her first T-ball practice this week. She was so excited to go and see who would be playing on her team. She went back to her room and changed into shorts and a tee shirt. I put her hair up in a pony tail and then she found a hat and some other accessories...including lipgloss. When Daddy got home she march down the hall and said to him "Well, how do I look?" I'm pretty sure none of the boys have ever said that before a practice...or ever. Jill

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Works for me...

As you can imagine, a family of 6 can generate loads and loads of laundry a week (about 20-25.) I found this unique hamper by Rubbermaid at Walmart a few years ago and it's been wonderful! I love that it rolls! That means on their laundry day the kids can roll their hamper out to the laundry room and start it by themselves!! I have one in each of the kids closets and 2 in my closet-one for whites and one for darks. I works for me!! Jill

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Hot Tubbin' it......

There's been so much excitement around here as Dad has been working on the hot tub to get it ready for the season. After filling it and finding that it had a leak, fixing that, filling up the tub again and then over chlorinating the water, then dumping that and starting over--you start to wonder if it's even worth it! Well, Dad got it right and the kids were able to enjoy the hot tub in the 54 degree weather the other night. I sat out in my sweatshirt and jacket and supervised and listened to the sweet sound of laughter and squeals of my kids. Way to go, Dad! Your hard work paid off!!

The boys even got a new "hairstyle" that night!! Jill

Monday, May 21, 2007

Beautiful weekend

This was opening day of baseball for our local teams. Saturday was just beautiful-sunny and in the high 70's. We sat out and watched Luke and Ben's games for about 4 hours-they both did very well...and won too! Here are some photos of our little players.

While we were at the ballgames, the firewood that I had ordered, arrived in our driveway. Even though they were tired, Ben and Anna helped move it to the woods and
stack it. (Luke went to a friend's house to play & Andrew was on a babysitting gig.)
Ben loved giving Anna a ride in the trailer on the way back to the house...she just smiled so big all the way! Jill

Friday, May 18, 2007

What's going on??

See this guy?? He's eating breakfast. Eggs and toast-Yum! Guess what? He's the newest employee at the local Dairy Queen. Go to him to borrow money this summer.

Check out this wiseguy. Isn't he cute?? He can sure hit a baseball.

Then there's this little girl. She spent lots of time inside my pantry yesterday.
Why, you might ask? She has a new glow in the dark Carebear. She slept with it last night too. It's name is Harmony. Quit looking at my messy pantry.

I haven't seen this boy for a few days. He's on a school trip. He comes back home today--after lunch. Maybe he could ride that thing around our yard--it needs it!

Enjoy your weekend! Jill

Thursday, May 17, 2007


Oh my gosh, I think I'm turning into a nerd. I spend lots of time now gazing at my bird feeders. I cannot believe the popularity and diversity at my bird feeders! I looked out yesterday and saw a rabbit and a squirrel, together, under my feeder, enjoying all of the goodies on the ground. Later in the day the turkey was back to check on both feeders in the front and back. Wow! I even saw an Indigo bunting at the feeder yesterday too! I'm trying my best to get some pictures of these birds from inside my house--through the window panes of our front window.(I have a birdie scrapbook page pictured in my head.) I sat yesterday for 10 minutes perched on our window seat with camera in hand ready for just the right moment. Never happened. Here's the best that I could come up with....... the indigo bunting.... isn't it beautiful??

Maybe I AM already a nerd....No- nerds would sit out in the bushes, closer to the bird feeder for a shot. I have any camouflouge? Jill

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

It works for me....

On Wednesdays I like to share something in my life that is working well for our family. This week I want to show you our family calendar. I have used this for the past 2 years and it really works well for our family of 6. I bought a desk calendar, put magnets on the back and attached it to the side of our refrigerator. The kids can see what's going on for the day too. I haven't gone spastic and color coded our activities for each child--that's too much work. If we get an invitation in the mail or have a school field trip,we just write it down right away. Everyone in my family knows that "if it's not on the calendar, it doesn't exist." (looks like nothing is scheduled for December yet. Do you want to come over for dinner??) Jill

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Interesting bird

I looked out into the backyard yesterday and saw an interesting songbird at the feeder...

Monday, May 14, 2007


This past weekend we had our 1st campfire of the season. The kids have been begging to round up some wood and enjoy s'mores. We invited several neighbors over at the last minute but no one could come. Boo Hoo! The fire was nice and warm--crackly too! Here are a few photos from the night.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

We are blessed...

How many people have a cross over their home on Mother's Day??? Awesome!

Mother's Day

Today was Mother's Day at our Home. I always build myself up for a day of selfishness, receiving fun cards and no cooking!! Well, the day started off with this....

We then attended church...

then proceeded to Mom's choice of lunch....Applebee's. ( Although the crowds were routing for Cousin's subs-- Who's day is it again?) I thoroughly enjoyed the Fiesta Lime Chicken!

Then we dropped the kids off at home and visited some model homes in our area to get some decorating ideas. How fun it was to see and "smell" a new home that didn't have any "dings" in the drywall or have dirty clothes on the floor.

Grocery shopping was next on the list. Hubby and I shopped for a few food items and picked up ingredients for spaghetti that hubby and kids would make for dinner that night. Kids were too busy doing their own "thing" to help bring in groceries or put them away. Hmmmm... Who's day was it again?? I ended up cooking dinner, just like a normal day. Mom declared that there would not be a Mother's Day on our calendar next year so she wouldn't be disappointed. SHAZAM!

Kids cleaned up dinner and the kitchen while Mom excused herself from the table and started scrapbooking for the rest of the evening.

After all of the fun AND disappointment of the day, I guess the realization is that I don't live in a "model" home with perfect people but I live in a real house with "dings" in the drywall, dirty clothes on the floor, and have beautifully imperfect kids... and I'm thankful for them. Jill

Friday, May 11, 2007

Just reporting in...............

Anna loves her 4K class. It has been a great experience for her. She has learned so much - like days of the week, months of the year and she can even read a little bit. But, she has also learned a few other things that aren't so lovely.
Everyday she comes home and gives me the "butt-crack report". This report lets me know who in her class has worn those ever so popular "low rider" jeans to school. Oh my! It' so weird hearing the words "butt crack" from such a sweet 5 year old. Thank goodness shorts season is upon us... Jill

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The REAL reason I wake up early

Box of cereal $3.50
Gallon of white milk 3.00
Dancing with your teenager in the kitchen at 5:30 am ---- PRICELESS

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

What works for me....

Here's one of life's biggest the dishwasher after dinner so your kids can unload it for you the next morning before school!! So simple, but it works for me!! and yes, I AM a mean Mom! Jill

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

It's good to live in the country...

Since the temperatures are getting warmer and we are consistent in keeping the bird feeders full, we are seeing the most beautiful birds right now. This morning I looked out the window and saw a bird that I haven't seen for a long time--a rose breasted grosbeak. We've also noticed that our friends, the baltimore orioles, have returned to our yard to look for the oranges and grape jelly that we provide for them. I know that the bluebirds are back too, but I just can't make myself buy meal worms for them--EEEW.

Monday, May 7, 2007

B.L.T.'s anyone???

Anna and John had a fun bonding moment yesterday. We decided to work up the soil and plant the garden. I believe this is the 3rd year that we've had a garden. It's been pretty successful each year. This year we decided to plant potatoes, green beans, peas, green peppers and tomatoes. Andrew and I went to the nursery and bought the plants(and flowers)and John and Anna planted them. I wasn't sure what type of tomato plants to get, so I stuck with the "Big Boy" variety, but I couldn't resist buying just one plant called the "BEEFMASTER". I laughed just looking at it!! It promises 2 pound tomatoes!
Anna informed me last night that someone in the garden accidentally stepped on a tomato plant (beefmaster) but it WASN'T her. Oh well, the kids don't like BLT's that much anyway. Happy Monday! Jill

Friday, May 4, 2007

Twin Day at School

How's Twin Day at our local Elementary school. I'm not sure I remember having a twin day in the past, but we sure had fun getting ready for it yesterday. I even buzzed Luke's friend's hair in my laundry room (with permission, of course)!!
Anna was excited to dress like her friend too!! By the way,in the picture Luke is on the left and Anna is pictured on the right. Enjoy your weekend! TGIF Jill

Thursday, May 3, 2007

When you're bored

What do you do when you're bored?? Rediscover toys at the back of the toy closet! It's like Christmas in May! Jill

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

What works for me.....

Last night I made my kids FAVORITE casserole...Taco Casserole. It's so simple and everyone loves it! How many times does that happen??? Here's the recipe....

Taco Casserole
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 can cream of chicken soup
shredded cheddar cheese
Bag of Doritos

Brown ground beef. Drain, and add taco seasoning and a little water (1/2 c.)
Add cream of chicken to taco meat and stir. Grease a 9 x 13 dish and add meat mixture to dish. Top meat with some salsa and then cheese on top. Bake for 30 minutes on 350 degrees (Or until it's warm). Just before serving top with crushed Doritos chips. Feel free to serve with lettuce and sour cream too.

For my picky eater, I have her dip the chips into the beef mixture--she likes to dip!! YUM!

I should mention that I received this awesome recipe from my neighbor!! Thanks, Pam!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007


Luke stayed home from school yesterday because his asthma was acting up and he was coughing a lot. During the morning, I carved a watermelon (his favorite) so he could have some for lunch. I put the watermelon rinds in a big bowl and politely asked him to dump them into the woods behind our home. He had no problem doing that for me!

After about 10 minutes, he wasn't back in the house so I peeked out the back windows of the house to see what he was doing. It couldn't possibly take 10 minutes to dump the rinds in the woods!! Well, what I found was Luke picking up each piece of rind, looking at it and taking several bites and then throwing it into the woods.(Did I mention that he likes watermelon?) He came back to the house with a BIG smile on his face and drips on his shirt! YUM! Jill