The musings of ME:
SAH mother of 3 kids, spouse of a doctor-in-residency, caretaker and teacher of random children.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Hunter Ben

Ben went hunting last weekend and came home victorious! He shot a doe with a bow and arrow! That is the first time he has hunted with a bow and arrow, but he has been practicing for a while now for when bow season started. I was thinking about it, and you know, I am so lucky to be married to him because if we ever needed to, I know he could provide food for our family, build a shelter for us (He built all the Preschool furniture and built the cabin he goes hunting at), plus even if we had no access to medical facilities, we'd have a doctor in our own family (well, soon to be doctor anyway). Ben just does a great job providing for our family, and I can't tell you how safe I feel being his wife. Plus, he deserves the prize for being the best husband of the year lately because he has really been stepping up and helping me out with the preschool kids and with Jackson and our household duties since I am having trouble keeping up. Several times last week I passed out on the couch before 6 pm, and he just fixed himself and Jackson dinner, gave Jackson a bath, and put him to bed and let me sleep.

I am so grateful Heavenly Father sent Ben to me, and even more grateful I get to be with him for eternity! Because of that I will have a family to be sealed to, even if I never get to be sealed to my parents and siblings.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Nana's Chicken and Broccoli

Last night I made chicken and broccoli with Ben's mom's recipe. It was his favorite meal when he was growing up, so of course, when we first got married, I had to find out how to make it for him.

I boiled a chicken on Sunday night when I made Chicken 'n' Dumplings, and I didn't use all the chicken I deboned, so I saved the rest thinking that Chicken and Broccoli would make a quick weeknight meal if the chicken part was already done for me.

Well, Ben, obviously, was excited for C&B, but Jackson especially loved it! He scarfed it down faster than I could put bites on his plate! It is really good, I have to say, Nana is an excellent cook. I thought it was so cute! I had to take some pictures of him almost licking his high chair tray clean!

Here's the easy and very yummy recipe in case you are interested...
Nana's Chicken and Broccoli
1. Boil a whole chicken, debone, shred chicken into bite-size pieces.
2. Grease a 13x9 Pyrex dish, put chicken pieces on the bottom.
3. Steam or boil fresh or frozen broccoli until brilliant green, but still crisp, layer above chicken.
4. Mix the follwing for the topping layer: 1 can of cream of chicken, 1 cup of sour cream, a little Garlic Salt.
5. Spread topping on top of broccoli like you'd spread frosting.
6. Top with grated Monterey Jack cheese.
7. Bake at 350 until cheese melts.
8. Enjoy!

Refreshed at Jamba Juice in more ways than one!

Tonight I was supposed to go to an SAA get together. SAA is basically a group of wives of med students who get together several times a month. I think the idea is to hang out with each other since we never see our husbands. Anyway, after a long, rough day at BILC (including a parent conference at 5:30 after I closed), I needed to get out of the house, so I called my friend Amy Betz, who I was planning on going to the meeting with, and we decided to blow it off and go to Jamba Juice and hang out. So we did. I had been craving Jamba for a few days and I didn't know there were several locations not too far from me! I had been saving my cravings for our trips to Tulsa, but now I don't have to! YEAH!

Anyway, she was on her way home from the airport (and just swung into the temple for a session on the way home - she's so good!) after dropping her husband off to go to Las Vegas (He is the Vice President of Ben's class, and he has to go out of state for meetings several times a year.) so we met at he Jamba on Main Street in downtown Ft. Worth. It was such a fun little outing. I had to take Jackson since Ben had an Elder's Quorum meeting at the church, btu it still felt so good to just get out of the house for a while and hang with a friend. We chatted for what only seemed like a few minutes, but turned out to be an hour and a half!

Poor girl, she has to speak at Stake Conference for her stake (which is not the same as mine), and she is a little panicked. Hence the trip to the temple, lol... I know she'll do great though, she and her husband are such awesome people, and rock solid church members. They lived with us for about a month this summer when they had some problems closing on their house, and we got to be very close. I really missed them when they moved out, and kinda wished they could have just been our roommates forever!

It was just such a freeing feeling to get out of the house. I have a tendency to be reclusive sometimes, but even for me, after almost a full week of working in my house from 7:15-5:30, then being too tired to leave the house after I close, I get a little stir-crazy. Anyway, I feel refreshed and also uplifted because Amy is such a genuinely sweet person who does her absolute best at everything. She inspires me to be a better person. Isn't that the best kind of friend?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Temper Tantrum

Pumpkin Patch

I know, I know this is a late post, but I finally had a chance to download my pictures of our Pumpkin Patch trip on Saturday. We went to a place in Flower Mound, which was SO awesome and all the profits go to several different Denton County charities. This place was way cooler than any pumpkin patch I ever went to as a kid. It has several bounce houses, a bounce slide, a huge hay pyramid, face painting, a hayride, a barrel train ride, a petting zoo, pony rides and so many more things to do. The best thing was that most activities were either free or cost only a few dolalrs. I think we just created a new family tradition.
We had a blast! Jackson ran aorung that place like a kid in a candy store. He was so excited to see all teh pumpkins. He kept saying, "puh, puh, puh" all day because I was trying to get him to say pumpkin and I was stressing the beginning sound, so that was all he focused, on. ;)

Here are a few pics documenting the cuteness and fun!

Flower Mound Pumpkin Patch

Off to find the perfect pumpkin

Maybe this one?

Just my size

Mickey needs an open-mouthed kiss apparently

Whoa! What is that?

Fun with Mama

Fascinated by the animals

The hay pyramid

On top of the world with Daddy

I'm just cute havin' fun!

What are those big kids doin?

Got my face painted

Saturday, October 18, 2008

My New Favorite Thing

I remember when I was about 12 I was with my mom at a neighborhood get-together (maybe a shower for someone) and she was talking with her friends. They were all listening to one woman excitedly describe her new carpet or tile or something for her house, I don't remember. All the women were envious and complimentary of her new upgrade, and with my hormonal preteen attitude, I remember thinking, "If I ever get to the point where I am excited about carpet, I need to get a life."

Well, apparently it is time for me to get a life, lol, because I am so excited about something I had in my house and never used. I had all these little dirt spots all over my carpet and living room. Some are from Jackson's spit up stains that we tried to get out with Resolve, but then it just collected dirt in that wet spot instead or maybe dirt from our shoes, who knows. I was about to call someone to come out and clean my carpet, but that is always such a hassle and when would I do it? I can't do it on the weekdays cuz I have a houseful of kids and I don't want to do it on the weekends because then I have to keep Jackson off a wet carpet for several hours. Then I remembered that my uncle Greg gave us a Dirt Devil Portable Spot Scrubber last Christmas, and we have never used it. I got it out thinking it was worth a try, and man, that thing is SO swesome. It works like a mini tool of what those professional carpet cleaners use. You simulateously spray the watered down solution onto your carpet with a vaccuum hose thing, and run the vaccuum part over and over it until wah-la! The stain is gone! All the stains in my carpet that were mostly dirt are completely gone, and the other stains (like I have one mysterious orange stain I can't get out) are at least faded. I'm so excited and I had to tell all my girlfriends!

Ok, now I'm headed off to get a life! ;)

Friday, October 17, 2008

What is Wrong With People?

All I want to do is dress up for Halloween like a zoo animal to match my son's cute elephant costume...I was thinking maybe a cheetah, but all I can find are goofy animals or slutty women's costumes. This is so frustrating! What happened to Halloween being a family holiday? (At least I thought it was based on what I experienced growing up, but maybe I was sheltered.) Who dresses like that? What is wrong with the world that a fun family holiday is twisted into a good excuse to get half naked?!?!

Hello, women of the world: It is COLD in October! Put some clothes on!

I did find a cute flamingo costume, but I was hoping for something that clearly speaks zoo theme, so I'm not sure if that does. What do you think?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Book Review: The Host and The Lovely Bones

I finally finished The Host this week. Many of my friends said it was slow-going and they didn't like it as much as other Stephenie Meyer books. I agree that it wasn't the same as falling in love with Edward in Twilight, but I really enjoyed it. I thought the plot was unique (or at least unique for me because I usually avoid science fiction), and I was intrigued by the idea of having someone else in your head, knowing all your memories and thoughts and feelings. Then again, that is also my worst nightmare. Some things are better left private, you know?

After reading the Twilight series and now The Host, I now have a new favorite romantic genre author. Maybe the books weren't meant to be pegged romantic, but of course, they SO are. Stephenie Meyer is a genius when it comes to capturing the excitement of new, young love. I also really enjoy Nicholas Sparks, but all his books are predictable, in that they all involve one character with some baggage they think they'll never overcome, but then they meet The One. He writes love as something deeper, more based on respect and a full understanding of each other, whereas S.M. writes it as passionate, addicting, and exhilerating. I enjoy both, but there is more to Stephenie Meyer's books than just the love story so she wins in my "book."

About a month ago, I got a chain mail book club letter. I was supposed to send one book to my Aunt Jeanne, and then send the letter to 6 other people. The letter promised I would get 6 new books and all I'd have to do was mail out one of mine. Well, I have had a hard time deciding what in my library I should send my 70-something (Great) Aunt Jeanne, and I must confess that the letter is still in my To Do inbox. However, I received a book in the mail last week called the Lovely Bones. I read the back cover, and thought it looked good, so I started it last night.

YIKES! I hope the ending is good, because the beginning was horrible (as in not something I wanted in my mind, not as in poorly written), however, the plot is again, so unique, that I have pressed on past the first chapter, interested in what will happen. The book is written from the perspective of a deceased 14-year-old girl who watches her family, friends, and murderer from heaven.

Stay tuned and I'll let you know how it turns out.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Gotta brag...

It amazes me daily how much Jack understands what I am telling him and how much he THINKS he is telling me. He babbles all the time now with such expression on his face. He is telling me all his secrets, I know.

Lately he has been trying to say his favorite school friend's name. It is so funny to hear it because unless you are me or L., you don't know he is saying it. It comes out kind of muddled like "Dan-Dan." Jackson always follows L. around to every center, copies his actions and the sounds he makes, and is super excited when he gets to school in the morning. It is cute to see him hero-worshipping this kid at such an early age. I wonder what qualities he finds so particularly cool about L. over the other kids. L. is a good kid and everything, but he is probably one of the least patient with Jackson at school, so it's funny to me that Jackson likes him so much. L. is usually annoyed with Jackson always taking his toys away or being in his way.

Also, today (and this was not the first time he has done this) he came up to me in the kitchen and I noticed he had a poopy diaper. I said, "Shoo! You are stinky!" (This is what I usually say when he has a poopy diaper.) He ran over to the shelf where I have keep the diaper changing mat, and pulled it off and laid down on it, all with a big smile! This is a refreshing change because usually diaper changing time is a fight start to finish! I couldn't help but laugh! Silly boy!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Prayer Request

After all the progress she has made lately, A.'s cancer is no longer in remission. They found cancer in her bone marrow. She is now going through her 8th round of chemo. She is still with me, but she is only doing half-days. Her mother has had to go on half-days at work, too. She is a single mom, with one income and no family in this area. All her family lives in Michigan. I don't even know how she can afford to send A. to me. A's grandfather has come to stay with her mother for one month. After that, I don't know what she will do.

I was so depressed about this news, and then A. came back to school today. Running a fever and wetting her pull-up (not a normal occurrence, she is fully potty-trained) because of the extreme amount of fluids they flushed through her system along with the meds they gave her at the hospital, she still cheerily played with the other kids, laughing and running. You would think she hadn't been in the hospital that morning. She inspires me to stop feeling sorry for myself when I've had a hard day and be happy to be alive and healthy.

I hurt for this family. They have been in my prayers every night. If you remember, please include them in yours, too. They need a miracle.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

The Next Things I'm Looking Forward To...

I love this holiday season! Just the feel and smell of the cool autumn evening air gets me excited for the fun things I have to look forward to in the next few months, like...

1. The TCU-BYU football game
2. Keagan's (my cousin's son) birthday party next Sunday afternoon
3. Boo at the Zoo
4. Turning the air conditioning off for a while & OPENING WINDOWS!
5. Spending Halloween with our families in Tulsa/watching my new niece get blessed
6. Annual Thanksgiving Family Lock-in (kind of) in our Galveston condo on the beach(if the island is ready by then, but we hear good reports of our area)
7. Finishing the waste of time online business course through TCC the state made me take for my in-home preschool director's certificate (I thought I was done with school!!)
8. My 2 Week Christmas Break!!
9. Christmas in Tulsa with both our families.
10. New Year's Parties with friends! Game on girls!
11. Ben opening his birthday present (hint...father-son football watching). He is going to LOVE it!