Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
This time of the year, as I sit and reflect on the blessings in my life and how very much I have to be thankful for, it is just a reminder to me of how faithful and loving that Jesus Christ is to me. On the right side bar of the blog I took part in the "thankful challenge" Each day of the month of Nov. I have listed something I am thankful for. As I listed each item on the blog, I made a specific point to stop and thank God for those blessings that He has so freely given me. It has really made me stop, think, and realize. Realize how truly blessed I am. Realize that it is the little things in my life that have a tendency to be overlooked. Realize what truly is important...and what is not important. It does not matter if my house is spotless...that can wait...what matters is sharing in quality time with my children. It does not matter if all the laundry is washed, folded and put away...what matters is sharing quality time with my husband. It does not matter if I have the newest car or wear the latest fashions...what matters is that I have the gift of Christ and that is all I need. The newest car or the newest clothes can not and will not bring me the purest joy that can only come from Christ.
I have so much that I am thankful for...much more than just the 30 days that will fill up on the right side bar challenge...especially today. Today, I am thankful for an un-eventful Thanksgiving day. =) For the past 3 years, there have been some pretty life changing events taking place on Thanksgiving day. The (surprise) arrival of Madeline 3 years ago, the phone call from the army that placed Jason on high alert status 2 years ago, and the Thanksgiving shared via the webcam last year because my precious hubby was deployed. I am so thankful that God is giving us an uneventful Thanksgiving this me I have really been dreading this specific week all month...I mean look at the track record over the past 3 years =) I feel like I can almost breathe a sigh of relief now. So for that I am thankful.

I am also thankful for so much more. I am thankful for the gift of Christ. Thankful that He would choose me. Thankful for His love. Thankful for the nearness of God (especially on those days when it feels like I am all alone) Thankful for His supply. Thankful for deliverance. Thankful for Christ's triumph over sin. Thankful that Christ satisfied God's wrath completely and that there is nothing for me to do. So thankful!

So today, enjoy your time spent with family and friends. Enjoy the food, the parade, and the football games. BUT please take a moment to reflect on just how much we all have and thank the One who supplied it all.

Oh, give thanks to the LORD
Call upon His name;
Make known His deeds among the peoples!
Psalm 105:1

Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is Good!
For His mercy endures forever.
Psalm 106:1

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Soccer Party

This past weekend, we had our end of the season party for Jack's soccer team. The kids enjoyed pizza, cake, video games, and received their trophies. It really seemed like everyone enjoyed themselves =)

This soccer season was the first time we ever played. It was a lot of fun to watch the children play...they are just too funny! We had a fantastic season and only lost one game (even though we were not suppose to keep score, I did) HA! I am so glad that Jason and his friend were able to coach the team...I know Jack loved that too! Jack says his favorite part is playing goalie. He did very good at this position! Who knows...we may have a future goalie on our hands =)

Below are some pictures of our Soccer Party:

Cute cake (and it was delicious too!)

Jack, Madi, Charlie, and Savannah enjoying the pizza

Jack getting knucks from Coach Kenny

Jack loves his trophy!

Jack and one of his teammates, Mason


Sunday, November 22, 2009


Madeline at about 1 month

Madeline ~ 1 yr old

Madeline ~ 2 yrs old

Madeline ~ 3 yrs old

My little girl turned 3 today! I can not believe she is already 3! Seriously, I can't...
Some things about Madeline:
- She can and MUST do everything by herself
- She must completely undress the minute she walks in the door...I don't understand it, but she has to do it
- She loves to play dress up
- She loves to play with her baby dolls (feeding them, bathing them, putting them to sleep...she is such a good mommy to them)
- She loves to walk around the house in her "tap-it" shoes with no clothes on ("tap-it" shoes are dress up high heels)
- She loves to watch me put on make-up and must put some on too ;)
- She is a girly - girl, but do not mess with her or her toys OR ELSE the girly - girl will get you 8)
- She loves food and would eat all day if I let her (she is just like me!)
- Her fave foods are raw veggies and salad, chicken nuggets, french fries, and pizza...her top pick would be salad though
- She loves to be read too
- She dislikes A LOT having her hair washed or brushed

The above is not a comphrensive in-depth list, but it is just some of the things that really stick out to me about our little girl =)

Happy Birthday to our little sweetheart!


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Madeline's Birthday Party

Today instead of yummy tailgating recipes, I am sharing my little girl's 3rd birthday party! Our theme was cupcakes! The idea was to have the children decorate gift bags and cupcakes...then they could take their completed cupcakes home with them in the cute decorated bags =) I had so much fun at this party watching the children come up with their masterpieces =)

When the children arrived, I had them decorate their gift bags. I had markers, glitter pens, and stickers for them to use. Once everyone completed their decorating, I brought out the cupcakes. I baked A LOT of cupcakes and iced them all. I then had an assortment of toppings for them to use...gummy worms, m&ms, sprinkles and crushed up oreos. We gave the children each a spoon and let their creativity flow.

Below are a few of the pictures from the party:

The giant cupcake cake...thanks so much Jess K for letting me borrow your cool cupcake pan =)

Cake table...extra cupcakes for the grown-ups to eat.

Table set up and ready for the kiddos to arrive and decorate their baggies and cupcakes.

The birthday girl standing in her decorated bedroom doorway.

The kids busy decorating.

Our sweet princess.

Our handsome Jack.

Madeline in her chef hat and apron...ready to decorate the cupcakes.

Jack in his chef hat and apron ready for some decorating.

My sweet Madeline watching while we sing "Happy Birthday"

Blowing out the birthday candles.

yep...sneaky Madeline with her spoon eating the icing off the cake.

oh lala princess dress up set =)

a pretty new outfit

very cute new jammies

love our new rainboots!

yay our fave! Tinkerbell!

Madi loves Fancy Nancy. She got some new books and a fancy nancy doll to hold while we read the books. She also got a tutu to wear =)

Madi loves the disney princesses.

A new bike!!!!

Hope everyone has enjoyed their Saturday! I know I sure did!!!


Thursday, November 19, 2009

One Of My Faves....

One of my favorite times of the year is....

because you get to do this....


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Yummy Treats

Muffaletta Sandwich

• 1 loaf Muffaletta bread (or Italian bread)
• 1 cup olive mix
Prepared Oh So Olive Dip (Tastefully Simple)
• 1/4 lb sliced ham
• 1/4 lb sliced mortadella
• 1/4 lb sliced Genoa salami
• 1/4 lb sliced provolone
• 1/4 lb sliced mozzarella
1. Cut bread in half horizontally.
2. Spread half with olive mix and half with Oh So Olive Spread then layer on meats and cheeses.
3. Cover with top. (Note: Ideally the sandwich should be made an hour or more in advance and then tightly wrapped in plastic wrap to enable juices to soak bread.)
4. Slice into quarters and serve.

Olive Salad:
This recipe makes a lot, but if kept sealed in a jar in the refrigerator it will keep for months.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minute
• 3/4 cup pimento-stuffed olives
• 1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives
• 1/4 cup giardiniera (Italian pickled vegetables)
• 2 lg. pepperoncini
• 3 - 4 pickled onions
• 2 Tbsp. capers
• 1 md. clove garlic, chopped
• 1 tsp. dried oregano
• A couple of grinds of black pepper
• 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
• 2 Tbsp. olive oil
1. Drain all ingredients.
2. Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped.
3. Refrigerate overnight

Ultimate Turtle Brownies

1 box (1 lb 6.5 oz) Original Supreme brownie mix (with chocolate syrup pouch)
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
1 bag (14 oz) caramels, unwrapped
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 bag (11.5 oz) semisweet chocolate chunks (2 cups)
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom and sides of 13x9-inch pan with baking spray with flour. In medium bowl, stir brownie mix, pouch of chocolate syrup, water, oil and eggs until well blended. Spread 1/2 of batter (about 1 1/2 cups) in pan. Bake 15 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in large microwavable bowl, microwave caramels and whipping cream uncovered on High 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until smooth.
3. Pour caramel over partially baked brownie; spread to edges. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the chocolate chunks and 1/2 cup of the pecans. Drop remaining brownie batter by small spoonfuls onto caramel layer. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup chocolate chunks and 1/2 cup pecans.
4. Bake 33 to 36 minutes longer or until center is almost set. Cool 1 hour at room temperature. Cover; refrigerate 1 hour before serving. For brownies, cut into 6 rows by 6 rows. Store covered at room temperature

ENJOY your Saturday! And.... WAR EAGLE!!!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day 09

On this Veterans Day, let us not forget to remember all the men and women who have served and are currently serving this great nation. If it was not for their selfless service, this country could not exist with the freedoms that we enjoy and take for granted. Veterans, your remarkable ability and willingness to serve bring tremendous pride. So thank you, thank you for being a part of something bigger than yourselves.

I wanted to make sure the kids understood how very important it is to show support to all our troops, so I took them to our town's Veterans Day Parade. It was actually a really good parade and the kids enjoyed it.

Jack and Madeline waiting on the parade to start.

I love this picture of the kids. I love how they are anxiously waiting on the parade to get to our end.

The kids had A LOT of questions about this float.

Noah and Jack waving.

Hannah Grace and Madeline waving.

The kids after the parade. (Madi, Lily, Hannah Grace, Noah, and Jack)

After the parade, we took the kids to get ice cream. Check out that big smile =)

Tonight for dinner, we went to Applebee's (along with everyone else in our town) and took part in the free meal for Veterans. My brother joined us along with our friends the Wade family. It is SO WONDERFUL of Applebee's to offer a free meal to veterans!

Me, Jack, Madi, Jason, and my brother Jeremy (sorry for the extreme close up of me)