Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

According to the Today Show yesterday, you consume 3,000 calories (on average) while eating your Thanksgiving feast.

Enjoy each and every one of those calories!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I'm Thankful

  • for my loving God
  • my handsome husband
  • my beautiful girls who make me laugh and make me want to cry because I love them so much
  • my "big" family
  • that I get to stay at home (and learn how to be a maid and chef)
  • that we are all healthy (and hopefully remain healthy over the holiday because some of the family we are going to be with is not healthy)
  • that all of the laundry is done-that rarely happens
  • I have a new pair of black boots I like
  • Glee and Biggest Loser (I'm really just "glad" for those)
  • a new, free library card
  • good friends
  • my small group
  • Diet Coke
  • I have already been receiving holiday cards in the mail
  • nap time
  • bedtime
  • my blogging friends
  • holidays

What are you thankful for?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Is your menu totally planned?

If you're looking for something sweet to add to your Thanksgiving menu, let me introduce you to this delicious recipe:

Pumpkin Crumb Cake

1 yellow cake mix
1 egg, beaten
1/4 lb. butter (1 stick)

Mix all of the above together and spread in a greased 9x13 pan, EXCEPT FOR ONE CUP OF THE CAKE MIX (reserve it for topping).

1 (15 oz.) can Libby's Pumpkin
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 pinches ginger
1 pinch cloves

Mix all together and pour over crust

1 cup reserved yellow cake mix
1/2 cup sugar
3 TBL. softened butter

Combine and crumble over top of filling

optional (which I chose NOT to do because I don't like nuts in my desserts...totally ruins them in my opinion): sprinkle chopped pecans or walnuts over the top

Bake uncovered for 45 minutes at 350 degrees

Delicious right out of the oven or warmed up later on.

This recipe was given to me by my friend, Leasha. It is SUPER!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Silver Dollar City 2009

We headed for Missouri Friday after Matthew got home from school. We had never taken the girls to Silver Dollar City and figured this was the best time considering all the commercials we have been seeing with the big light parade.

We got into Branson around suppertime and ate at the BEST place Friday night. I mean EVERYTHING was fantastic! The chef walked around to each table and asked how we enjoyed the meal. We will definitely eat there when we go back.

We went to our hotel and took the girls to the pool to swim. That's ALL that Nora wanted to do (are we going to swim at the show-and-tell soon?).

Sadly, I have no pictures of that.

We got to SDC around noon the next day and the girls were PUMPED (Nora kept referring to SDC as the North Pole).

The first thing we saw was a dancing group. Nora and Elyn loved watching them.

Then we headed to the back where the rides for the little kids are located. Nora did not want to ride but Elyn was ready!

When we got to SDC, there were no lines and we walked right up and got on the frog ride. I had not seen the ride in motion and didn't know what to expect when it started. I got the biggest kick out of the ride and laughed pretty much the entire time.

Elyn didn't enjoy it quite as much as I did.

And here is Nora during the ride...hahahaha!

We forced Nora on the next can see from the picture how excited she was to be on the butterfly ride.

Eventually she started liking it.

And she even rode the next ride all alone.

Then it was Matthew's turn on the frog ride with both girls.

They both LOVED it the 2nd time (well, the 1st time for Nora).
And we're about to ride the elephants.
After a few rides, we headed over to a show...FROSTY!
Both girls were looking forward to seeing the show. One little girl got chosen from the audience to help the two singers put Frosty together...she wasn't one of our little girls though.
BUT, they did ask all the kids in the audience to come up on stage and sing some songs with Frosty. See the back of sweet Elyn's head?
Where was Nora on stage? She was still in the audience. Our bashful girl didn't want to join all the other kids.
Notice anything missing on Frosty? That's right! His hat. At this point in the show, they are looking for Frosty's hat to put on him and help him come to life.
Well, they found the hat, put it on Frosty and he came to life. Once that happened, Elyn stood up on stage, turned around to face the audience, and started screaming.
Matthew went up to get her and brought her back to our seat. (All the while, the audience is dying laughing).
Scary Frosty.
See the snow. Yep, it snowed at Frosty.
And Elyn was DYING to get back up on stage and experience the snow too. But, Frosty had scarred her. So she stood in the aisle...that was a close as she would get to the snow. And Frosty.
Yep, still sitting in the seat.
Then we got on the train and LOVED it! I was hoping it would be soothing enough to lull Elyn to wasn't.
About 1/2 way through the train ride, we stopped and "Grandpa" told us the birth story of Christ. It was so nice.
Then, we went back to the caterpillar/butterfly ride.
So much fun!

And that is where the pictures end. My battery died. Awesome.

We did stay for the light parade and the girls were miserable. They were begging to go home because they were so tired and cold. Making memories! About 2 minutes before the parade started Elyn fell sound asleep. Like coma-induced sleep.

Nora was mesmerized though. It was sweet.

The best moment of the day was when we finally were back in the car, the girls were buckled in and Nora said, "I had a really fun day."

Totally worth it all!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Fourth annual torture fest

If you haven't looked at the pictures in the previous post, stop reading and go look at them.
Okay, you're back.
This weekend we took the girls to Silver Dollar City. None of us had ever been before (well, Matthew went in junior high, but that doesn't count...right?) and we were pretty excited.
I will write a post all about our SDC experience later. But, right now, I would like to show you how we like to give our children reasons for future therapy.
We had been talking about SDC for a while and how we would get to see Santa while we were there. Nora was pretty excited and Elyn acted like she was looking forward to it also.
We got to Santa's home and stood in the surprisingly short line.
If you are curious, Elyn is trying to shove an animal cracker up her nose...that's how we roll around here.
Nora was so excited about seeing Santa that she started acting like the reindeer.
While we were waiting in line I asked the girls what they were going to ask Santa for. Nora said, "A lot of Barbies." Awesome...little clothes. Elyn said, "A new baby doll and candy." At this point, they both were ACTING excited to see the jolly old man.
We got on stage and all of a sudden only one of my children showed any interest in being around Santa. I don't know if you can tell in the below picture, but Elyn has a DEATH GRIP (and that's an understatement) on me.
Nora, in true form, is a little shy at first and sticks her hands up to her mouth (grrrr). Elyn, however, wanted NONE of it. Look at the sheer terror on her face. I am telling the photo elf that I am about to put her in Santa's lap and she better start snapping.
Santa must have extremely strong arms because he was able to hold Elyn in his lap during the photo session.
Nora was just annoyed at how loud Elyn was screaming and immediately put her hands over her ears. She did manage a little smile.
I rescued Elyn and Nora got down to business, telling Santa what she wants.
"And one more thing..."
All done.
I came back up to get Nora and Elyn freaked out again. She didn't even want the candy cane that Santa was offering.
Look at can almost sense his relief that our turn was over. I hope they pay him well!

So, there you have it...Santa picture 2009. I'm already excited to see what 2010 brings!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

So, if you think these are funny...

just wait until tomorrow.

When will I ever have a NORMAL Santa picture?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Next please...

(If you are a family member who may be receiving a Christmas gift from me this year, you might want to look away...or you can look and ruin EVERYTHING. It's up to you. And really, you're not ruining anything. Actually if you go ahead and look, you can start practicing your "surprised" face instead of "disappointed" face if you don't like what I have chosen.)

ANYWAY (see, Deborah?)...

I'm ready for the next step...
How about you?

Joy's Hope is making it easy to make scarves!

Monday, November 16, 2009

All we need is the pole

Back in June, I posted this picture...
This was the first day that Nora independently dressed help from mom and dad.

Since then-oh my goodness! She has not stopped!

I usually (read-ALWAYS) pick out what she is going to wear in public. She would prefer to wear the exact same summer dress every day...every single day. (I actually didn't pack it with the rest of her summer clothes because I knew she loved it so much and figured it would be a good dress-up dress for her...little did I know it would cause much drama during the cool fall weather.)

I wish I could be one of those moms who lets their kids dress themselves and ignore the fact that they are wearing stripes and plaids together...but I'M NOT. I do let her pick between dress and pants though. Dresses always win (we need more dresses).

Although I am a bit controlling when it comes to dressing in public, when we get home, I do not care what she wears.

She usually (read-ALWAYS) walks into the house and goes straight to her room to remove what she is wearing and replace it with something more "Nora appropriate".

Usually it is her Barbie dress (or princess dress of some kind), a tiara, plastic high heels and jewelry OR a purple shirt (from the summer) and a see-through ballet skirt (which she begs to wear to school).

Today, however, this is what she chose to wear...
Matthew came home and said all she was missing was the pole.

I think all that is missing is the swimming pool with the butler and drink.

(Check out how much thinner Nora's face looks in the 2nd picture...sniff, sniff...she's growing up!)

Thursday, November 12, 2009


December 22, 1999...I purchased my first car. It was a 2000 model Honda Accord.

It had NINETEEN miles on it. 19. I was so excited to buy it.

I knew that I wanted a Honda because the boy that I had liked for the past few years (named Matthew Henderson) drove an Accord and it seemed to hold up pretty good.

I was looking for a car that would last me for a very long time (at least the amount of time that I had to pay for it).

Almost 10 years later, we are still driving it (and it has been paid off since 2004, thank you very much).

Our car hit a milestone tonight while I was driving to Harrison...
(yes, I was driving while the picture was taken...quit judging (Matthew) )

From 19 to 19...are you teary-eyed because I think I might be.

Here's to hoping that the car lasts for 13 more Nora can enjoy it as much as we have.

Looking for a car? Obviously a Honda Accord is the way to go.

(And CEO of Honda, if you are reading this, yes, I would be more than happy to drive new cars of yours (for free) and write reviews about how great I think they are...just saying.)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

funnies/cute things

Today we went to eat lunch with Matthew. Sometimes he comes out of the school to greet us (and help me tote everything in). Today was not one of those days.

A man DID come out of the school though. Nora said, "Nope that's not daddy". It was pretty obvious to me that this man was not Matthew...he was African-American. But his skin color is not what clued her into the fact that it was not her daddy.

She said, "He has brown hair, Daddy has gray."
Elyn and Nora were playing the other morning. They were pretending to be different people.

Nora came up to me and said, "I'm the mommy. Say 'hi mommy'."

Elyn comes up and says, "I Jesus. Say 'hi Jesus'."
I mentioned this on Facebook but...

I was folding clothes the other day and was folding Matthew' boxers. Nora was watching me and said, "What are those called again?" I told her, "Boxers. Daddy's boxers." She looked at me, thought for a second, started laughing and said, "No, they're called panties!".

Poor Matthew.
While we were at our wonderful, fabulous, new library today I had a hard time keeping Elyn sitting down and not yelling (it's difficult because she doesn't get to go to toddler storytime due to preschool story time going on at the same time).

I kept telling her , "Shhhhhh!", "You need to sit down", "Look, look at the book."

Finally I had to pick her up and carry her to the back of the room...while she was screaming, "I DON'T WANT A 'PANKING!"

Fyi...I wasn't going to give her one.
Last week was Parent Observation week at ballet. We got to go in and video/take pictures of the kids. And if I knew how to put the video on the computer, I would.

Nora stood for most of the lesson with her hands in her mouth NOT dancing. When we got home to "show-off" the video to her daddy he was confused why we pay for the lessons each month. (She has a bit of a problem with she freezes up when ANY attention is placed on her. Who ARE her parents?)

Today was the first lesson after the disaster Parent Observation day. I have no idea how it went because I did not even look at her the entire time.

After dinner tonight we overheard her saying, "Plie, Releve". AND actually doing those moves.

I guess our money isn't going to waste.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Join me...

as I "scarf along".

(Unless you are a family member, then don't, because chances are pretty good you will benefit from this in the form of a Christmas present. Unless you want two, then, go ahead.)

My sewing machine does not need to be dusted off, but I'm always on board for a quick, cute tutorial/present idea.

Join the "scarf along".

Sunday, November 08, 2009

The Help

I just finished reading The Help.

I started it Friday and finished it tonight.

And I cried through the last 5 pages.

I'm so sad that the book is over!

If you haven't read it, put it on your list of "must reads".

I would now like to have a conversation about it...let's talk.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

The best card to have

Every since we moved to NWA, 5.5 years ago, I have had a love/hate relationship with our library. Actually it has always teetered on the edge of hate (which is a word that we don’t use)…very little love.

Being the reader that I am, it was one of the first locations I sought out after we moved. I was so excited to get my library card and browse the books.

I went up to the information desk to inquire about getting a FREE membership.

(That’s one of my favorite aspects of a library...all those books at your fingertips and you can have them for two weeks FOR FREE.)

The information lady/librarian asked to see my identification to start the process.

Hmmmm, I see you don’t live in our city. It will cost you $11.00 to purchase a membership”, said my friendly librarian.

“Excuse me?!? I live RIGHT NEXT DOOR to your “city”. We share a Chamber of Commerce AND there is no library in the town that I live in.”

“I know, isn’t that just the craziest? You live mere seconds from our CITY and yes, we in fact, do share a Chamber of Commerce. However, since your address is not actually in the same place as the library, you are required to pay $11.00 to check out books.”

I was FURIOUS (overstatement)!

I actually was so upset that I did not even get a library card that day.

I know. I showed them.

Wouldn’t it have been fantastic if I had actually marched myself down to the CHAMBER OF COMMERCE and complained. Asked (demanded!) to speak to the mayor and have him explain this to me. Insisted that the CITY pay for my membership?

That would be a great story...if it had happened.

I think I went home and complained about it to Matthew (who really didn’t even understand why I wanted a library card in the first place).

Obviously I will never be the ring-leader for a picket line.

I eventually got tired of PAYING for books and went back to the CITY library and purchased a membership (even typing that sentence makes me a little ill).

Since that day I have cringed a little each time we check out books.

(Oh, and I had to renew that membership each year.)


After I had children, I ventured into the land of story time.

I’ll be honest-it was painful for me to sit and watch at toddler story time. The story time lady read picture books that 6th graders would have had a hard time sitting through. The books were a bit dull. And long. And boring.

And her expressions weren’t much livelier than Mr. Knit Knots. (If you don’t have a 2 to 6 year old, you have NO IDEA who that is. He’s a snooze.)

BUT, Nora/Elyn loved going to the library. Not for story time though.

To get MOVIES.

(You can tell we are doing a great job of raising them as readers.)

SERIOUSLY, I read like a thousand books a day to these kids and go on and on about how great reading is. And all they care about at the library is the DVD section (which is dwarfed by the VHS section. It’s almost’s time to convert those puppies over).

We still went though. We sat through story time, I FORCED them to choose some books to take home and then we made our way over to the media section for our DVD choice.

(And heaven help you if you return the DVD late. You will need to take out a small loan to repay that late fee if, let’s say, you totally forget about the DVD and accidentally leave it in your portable DVD player and then put the player back up in your closet and, two weeks later, you are trying to check out some books and the lady tells you that your DVD is two weeks late and that will be $20 in fines. You could have bought the DVD for cheaper. Totally hypothetical.)

THEN I started wanting to reserve books.

Guess what? It cost FIFTY CENTS to reserve a book.


We are going to have to start putting a “library” section in our budget with all the money that are getting from the Henderson’s.

(It’s sound like a very hard life, doesn’t it?)

Fast forward (thank goodness!) to yesterday.

I decided to try a new library. It’s a smidge closer to our house BUT not a part of our Chamber of Commerce (like that even matters).

I took the girls for the story time and OH MY GOODNESS-it was GREAT!

The lady had EXPRESSION in her voice, she had puppets, she didn’t read EVERY SINGLE word on the page when she noticed the kids getting restless, she gave the kids nametags so she could call them by name and she had songs/dancing!

After story time was over, she had pre-selected books that were based on the theme of the day that the kids could check out.

Her craft was CUTE (although a little developmentally inappropriate, but I DIDN’T CARE!).

The Children’s Section was HUGE and so was the grown-up section!

(And this one had DVD’s Nora/Elyn were hooked.)

I went to the info desk to ask how much it would cost to get a “free” membership.

I figured I might as well give my money to a library that seemed good.

The man asked me if I lived in that town.


Do you work here?


Do you pay any of your utilities here?

YES!!!!!!!!!! Ding ding ding ding!

I got a FREE card (and he didn’t even require a bill of said utility)!

I could have hugged him on the spot!

Do you see how he worked with me? He WANTED to give me a free card. He knew that I needed that.

Then I asked how much it cost to reserve books.

ZERO DOLLARS! The way it should be.

I am thrilled with my early Christmas present…a library card.

Correction: a FREE library card.

AND I already have two books to read:

I had these on reserve at the “city” library FOR EVER.

I can’t wait to get started!

Happy reading to you...and if you don’t have a library card-GO GET ONE!

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