Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I Love Chubby Legs!

Eloise is just dying to crawl.
She gets up on her hands and knees and tries to GO...
but ends up belly flopping and rolling instead.

I'm sure it will happen soon enough...
and I am DEFINITELY not rushing it!
(I don't want my baby to grow up so fast!!)

My sister... she happens to be the queen of winning giveaways.
It seems like every time I see her, she has something new.
When I ask her where she got it...
Her reply (almost every single time):
"Oh, I won it in a giveaway!"

I'm not even joking, people.

Well... this benefits me greatly!
Because she wins stuff for Eloise!

Aren't her chubby little legs adorable in these
Happy Crawler Leg Warmers!?

Yep, those were free!
Thanks Katy!

They will be perfect for El's chubby legs as the
weather cools down!
Especially once she figures out how to put
one leg in front of the other!


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Take THAT You Crappy Cancer!

The past week has been a whirlwind! I really didn't want to post much about it until after the fact... because, well, I didn't really want everyone on the internet who may happen upon my blog to know that I was alone for 4 days with my 7 month old baby and my 10 year old niece! I may watch too many forensic shows... but I sure as heck know that I don't want to be ON one! haha!

Anyway! Last week was my father in law's surgery. If you have been reading my blog for the past few months, you'd know that he was diagnosed with Stage 3 Esophageal Cancer. The tumor was so large that he couldn't swallow anything but liquids. They were able to go in and "open up" his throat so that he could eat again... but the tumor was still there... and so was the cancer.

After weeks of chemo... we got a report that there was no more cancer visible on his scans! We were THRILLED! He was scheduled for surgery in early August.

The day after he got the scan reports back... he told Cory that he wasn't sure what happened... but all of a sudden.... he could swallow again! Even though they had cleared his throat a month or two beforehand... the tumor was still making it difficult to swallow (try having to chew each bite of food like 30-40 times just to be able to swallow it!). Cory told me that he was hoping the doctors went in for surgery and that the tumor wouldn't be there. We were praying for that!

The surgery got pushed back to August 24th - which happened to be my sister's 30th birthday!

So, while Eloise and I were at my sister's house celebrating her birthday... Cory's dad was in surgery and I was getting updates every few hours via cell phone.

I can't tell you how ecstatic I was to get the call that the surgery was over.... and that THE TUMOR WASN'T THERE!! Can you believe it!? I can! That's the power of prayer, people!!!

The doctors still wanted to take precautionary measures to make sure that they got all of the cancer cells... so they removed part of his esophagus and stomach (and I think some lymph nodes -- I'm not good with details)... but they said it was one of the quickest surgery of that type that they've ever done... and they were shocked that the tumor was gone! They credit the chemo, of course.... but we are praising GOD!

So tomorrow is the day that he comes home.... and it also happens to be his birthday!! Eloise and I are going to take flowers and balloons over and hang up a banner that I made. We won't be there when he gets home - I wouldn't want people at my house after I just got out of the hospital! But hopefully he'll know that he is loved!

Cory and I want to thank all of you who kept his dad in your prayers! We truly serve a mighty God!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Anybody Got 50 Cents?

I want to try to win that cute little baby doll in the crane machine!

hee hee!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

You're 7 Months, Baby Girl!

Today marks 7 months for Miss Eloise!

She loves her Minnie Mouse...
and I'm pretty sure by the time El has all of her teeth,
Minnie may not have a nose or tail left!!

She has been doing well eating her cereal, fruits and veggies.
For awhile it was "dinner & a show" every meal time!
She would NOT eat unless we made her smile
and stuck the spoon in her mouth really fast before she closed it.
Let me tell you - we've acted like more than clowns to get this girl to eat!
But... we seem to have gotten past that little hiccup!

She only naps for about half an hour at a time...
but sometimes I get lucky and she will sleep for an hour or so.
Usually she doesn't sleep for more than 2 hours during
the day - which I hear is odd for a baby!
I dunno!

She sleeps great at night though!

She likes going for walks... it was a little chilly today,
so she was sporting her cute hat from her Aunt Katy!
She's still a bit of a baldy! Her hair is coming in thicker,
but doesn't seem to be getting much longer!

Eloise has 6 teeth. 4 on top, 2 on bottom.

She is starting to creep around on her belly a bit...
but finds that it's much more efficient to roll wherever she wants to go!

She loves the dog and cat... and especially LOVES chasing them
when she is in the walker!

Her little laugh is sweet... and often times she'll just giggle
while she is sitting on the floor playing with her toys!

She is just a bundle full of joy... and we love her to pieces!

Happy 7 Months, Eloise!
(You're growing too fast!)

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Country Blossom Etsy Shoppe

Take a moment to swing by my sister's Etsy Shop!
She has recently posted some of my mom's lovely pottery!
Along with that are beautifully hand knit baby bonnets and dish cloths that my sister made!
They are both so talented!

(This is a pot I made that will be in the shop also!)

Friday, August 19, 2011

Oh, That Face...

Eloise is napping right now... and I have a few things to get done before she wakes up... but I just wanted to share a picture of her from this morning.

I know that a mother shouldn't want their child to cry... but I must admit, I love El's crying face! At this particular point, she was only upset because she wanted up and I had put her down on the floor... so she wasn't in great pain or anything like that! But there is just something about her little scrunched brow and pouty mouth that melts my heart! I do try not to pick her up at every little fuss... we don't want to make a habit of that! But it is hard not to want to hold her close and give her little kisses on the top of her head!

This baby stage is flying by... and I want to capture every moment that I can!

Monday, August 15, 2011


Here's my cute little jellybean!

I don't have a whole lot to write about these days....
I am engulfed with spending time with Eloise (and Cory when he isn't at work).

I started my part time job as church secretary at the beginning of the month and that takes up a couple of hours from my week. I seriously can plow through the work in no time. I won't be making much more than $50 a month! But I am enjoying it and it gets me and the baby out of the house for a little bit.

Other than normal household things... cooking and cleaning... my life is consumed by play time, diapers and nursing! I'm OK with that--although it is nice to have a change now and then.

Speaking of....

Yesterday morning we went to my parents church and spent the afternoon at their house. It was nice to visit and I helped my mom get a few things ready for a picnic.

Early evening, we went to a small picnic and celebrated my nephew's 8th birthday. It was a lot of food, laughter and fun!

We had gotten my nephew a few items... but my special gift to him was a scrapbook that I made of his first "road trip" back in 2009. I had the pictures tucked away and came across them earlier this summer. I had always planned on making one... so I rallied myself during Eloise's nap times to get it done. Let me tell you, it isn't easy to do when you've got a kid who only sleeps for 30 mins at a time! But I got 'er done and I really think Xavier liked it. I hope he will keep it safe and treasure it for years to come!

I also have to mention that my mom found this crazy jelly bean game and brought it for my brother-in-law, his brother and their cousin to play. The whole gist of it... is there are different flavors of jelly beans... You spin the wheel... whatever color you land on... you have to pick out that color of jellybean and eat it... but you don't know if you'll eat the good flavor or the bad!!
(for example: the BLACK jellybean could be Licorice... or SKUNK SPRAY!)

So... here is Dan... do you think he'll get PEACH or BARF flavor??

If you want to have a great time laughing... check out BEAN BOOZLED!
It seriously is a HOOT!

Friday, August 12, 2011


Happy Birthday Xavier!!

(You were so little in this pic!!! Now you're so big! AH!)

We love you!!!
Have an amazing day!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Boo's Home!

Boo has been home for a number of days in a row...
and Eloise has been loving it! (Me too!)

El has been chasing Boo in her walker...
and we don't think Boo minds too much because she doesn't run too far away!

I love my beautiful babies!

Friday, August 5, 2011

MMMMmmmm... Marinade!!

I am horrible, I didn't take a picture... but bear with me!

You absolutely MUST try this marinade recipe.

For years, I have been trying to figure out how to cook chicken. I try to grill, boil (Yes, boil - not broil) and bake. Since I am so paranoid about having under-done meat, I usually end up cooking the crap out of it... and really, who likes totally dry - have to take a big drink with every bite - chicken?

It gets old.

Well, my sister's family bought Cory a subscription to EATING WELL for his Birthday this year. We got the first issue a couple of days ago and as I was flipping through, I noticed a recipe for a marinade... and we actually had all of the ingredients already in our pantry! I have NEVER used a marinade before. Does that make me weird?

So, I decided to give it a whirl... and WHOA MAMA! It was sooooo delicious!

I wanted to share the recipe with you because it's EASY PEASY!

(Makes enough for 1 1/4 lb of chicken)
Whisk 1/4 c. each Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar, 2 minced Garlic Cloves, 1 T. Italian Seasoning, 1 tsp. Salt and 1/2 tsp Pepper

Place chicken in a shallow dish and pour the marinade over it.
Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 1-12 hours.
(The longer it marinates, the more intense the flavor)

Grill on Med/High for 4-8 mins per side...
(only turn once!)


And, since I didn't take a picture of the chicken, I'll leave you with a picture of my sweetie pie!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Pretty Project

My mom offered to help make the invitations/envelopes for someone's bridal shower...

So she came over on Sunday to attend church with us... and then we spent the afternoon making envelopes and cards!

I think they turned out adorable!!


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

In A Pickle...

This past weekend, a friend brought us a bunch of veggies from his garden! WOO HOO! I really wish we had a garden... but I just do not have the attention span at this point to sit and read about how to garden correctly--then actually do it. So we are definitely excited when people so generously share their vegetables with us! (I must say though... we DO have a pumpkin plant just randomly growing up by our chicken coop!!! haha!)

Pickling cucumbers was in one of the bags of veggies we received, so I found a recipe out of my Nourishing Traditions cookbook to make pickles!

I had to make a trip to the store anyway - so I decided to pick up some fresh dill for the recipe. I kid you not. Practically the WHOLE store was restocked yesterday morning... except for the fresh dill. Of course. In my little town... we have Super Walmart at the far end of town or a small local store. So... I decided to stop at our little rinky dink store on the way home to try to find dill there. Eloise had fallen asleep in the 5 minutes it took me to get there. But I didn't want to lug her inside in the car seat because I swear it weighs like 45 lbs!! AND... this little store doesn't have convenient cart corrals. If you use a cart to take your groceries to your car... you walk the cart BACK to the store. Like I said... rinky dink. So, I get the baby out of the car, she wakes up, we walk inside... aaaaand... no dill. Nice.

I ended up just going home. I was a little frustrated... but decided to call the only other store I know of (in the next town over) to see if they had any dill (before I made a trip out there!!). They said they did. So, after lunch, I loaded the baby back in the car and drove to the store.. Eloise fell asleep in the car - since I had interrupted her earlier nap time. I didn't bother with a cart (again, this store had no cart corral either!)... so I just lugged a sleeping Eloise in her seat through the store! I almost didn't find the dill, I was definitely getting frustrated! But alas, there it was and we were on our way out the door as quickly as I could go with an 18 lb baby in a car seat smacking against my leg as I lugged it!

This pickle recipe I have calls for WHEY. I don't believe this is normal for most recipes... so I had already put out some yogurt to start straining the whey out of it. I made one jar of pickles with the whey I had from before (once I got home with the dill)... and then Eloise and I went to go visit the neighbors. Their baby granddaughter was over for a visit and we like to get the girls together.

(I love Eloise in this pic! She was so excited!)

Later on in the evening, after the yogurt had been strained... I was going to try to gently squeeze more whey out of it... and so I go into the kitchen to do just that... and seriously... there was a giant SPIDER in it! In the whey. Swimming around. I couldn't believe it wasn't dead but maybe it was some kind of freak spider. Definitely a freak spider. I was SO irritated! After going to 3 stores for fresh dill... then to find a spider in my whey!? I tossed the whole batch because... well who knows where spiders come and go and what disgusting things they carry. *sigh* So, Cory helped me to find another recipe online. It said not to use a metal pan to heat the vinegar, etc. (?REALLY?!) UGH. I have ONLY metal pans. So we found another recipe that said we could... so we adapted the two recipes to make our own. Cory helped me redo the math so that we would have enough liquid for the 3 quart jars of cucumbers I had. However, we goofed up on the math and ended up with not enough liquid! Not sure how THAT happened!

It seemed like it was one nightmare after another to make these stinkin' pickles!! The dill, the whey, the math! But finally, we got a few jars made... and they better stinkin' taste good! That's all I have to say about that!!

(Left: Whey Pickles... Right: Regular Pickles)