I'm currently in the process of changing blog hosts.
OH FOR GOODNESS SAKES!
I can sense some of you squirming in your seats going oh no! change! I, uh, change my undies but that's about it! I know, I know. most people aren't into change and the anxiety that sometimes comes along with it, but I promise we'll get through this.
(oh, and speaking of change, I'll be saving $14.95 a month. ka-ching!)
so before you get your undies in a bundle, I will post a link from here over to the new blog once I get everything situated. the title will still be the same, just a slight change in the web address.
I think you'll like the new look.
and I think I'm going to get a few brownie points from my in-laws.
aren't they cute?
need I say more?
anyway, here's a quick peek into last weekend's itinerary.
notice that we both have backpacks on. and if you study the photo a bit more closely, you'll also notice that those backpacks actually do have children in them.
yes, this is what we call a family hike, people.
more pictures to follow.
now if you'll please excuse me while I reacquaint myself with Mr. Coffee.
not only is Rowan a dare devil, he's a grumpy dare devil.
try as I might, I could not get him to crack a smile let alone even look at me.
so then I called in big brother Jake and after thousands of fart noises, flapping his arms like a chicken and basically making a ridiculous fool out of himself, still, just a teeny tiny smidgen of a grin.
I give up.
Rowan at age two (aka, Mr. Grumpus)
he is what he is.
and grumpy as he may be, there's something about him that just makes my heart happy.
have a great weekend!
I agree that title sounds rather corny. but since my mind is void of any stories at the moment, I will share a few thoughts instead.
-tornadoes wreak havoc in northern Arizona yesterday. what next?
-Rowan. where on earth did this kid come from? Gary doesn't claim him, I don't claim him, the UPS guy---well, you know . I'm pretty sure there must have been a mix up at the hospital and someone else ended up with our sweet little cherub while we're stuck raising who knows whose little monster. okay so maybe not.
and I lied because actually I do have a story.
last week I caught Rowan red-handed eating strawberries at the neighbor's house. and that would have been totally fine except for one minor detail: the neighbors weren't home. of all the nerve! now what on earth would possess him to do such a thing? it's not like I go about casually strolling into random neighbors' houses in search of food. I mean at least I try not to make a habit of it.
also, where as most people tend to avoid danger, Rowan seeks it out. where is something he can climb on top of and then swan dive to the floor? is that a set of stairs over there? because he's thinking he could clear at least ten of them.
in fact, the day I caught him chawing on the neighbor's strawberries, was also the same day he decided to morph into spidey man and climb out the window onto the roof. seriously! fortunately I rescued him before anything tragic happened, but unfortunately, that was another ten years off my life. and now I don't even dare blink. because in that split second he'll be up on some ledge going "look, mom, LOOK!" be still my heart.
-since the girls have expressed interest in baking and cooking, I recently added "fixing dinner" to the job list. so two days a week, Hannah and Chloe will be responsible for making dinner. I'm not sure who is more excited; them or me. I'm having them start with relatively simple meals like spaghetti, tacos, soups, etc. this means a little more organization on my part as far as planning the meals and having the ingredients on hand. on today's menu: sloppy joe's. (everything tastes better when you don't have to make it, right?:)
it's been a treat for me to watch the two of them interact, learn and grow together.
-finally, it's with great sadness that we say "good-bye" to Ruth and Mark and family. in just a few short weeks they will be starting a "new" adventure in Minnesota. the good times and memories made with them here in Flagstaff will forever be imprinted on our hearts and in our minds. we wish them the best of luck and God's blessings in their new endeavor.
and so as we close this chapter in our lives, another one opens; although I'm not sure how this one plays out yet.
only time will tell.
first of all, I was thrilled beyond words when Lori asked if I would be interested in taking pictures for her etsy shop, 1crown3tiaras. that was a no-brainer! the clothing she designs is simply stunning!
in fact, just seeing all the adorable items these talented seamstresses can whip up makes me wish I would have paid more attention in those home-ec classes instead of using them as free time for goofing off.
apparently I'm not smart enough to be a sewing guru. I'm hopeless when it comes to figuring out patterns and my fingers seem to be a magnet for pins to jab. I spend more time cussing and crying when trying to sew than actually getting any thread into the fabric. or so it seams. hee.
and now back to my little models.
just to be clear, I'm using the term "model" quite loosely here. as in there was plenty of pouting and arm-crossing going on. especially from stubborn miss Phoebe.
it was only after I promised them ice cream that they finally agreed to cooperate. and even then we had to iron out a few "minor" details, because where as I was thinking Mickey D's $1.00 cones, they apparently had the $4.00 Cold Stone variety on their minds. hmph. at the ripe age of four and almost six they're already ice cream snobs.
(read that as I made the mistake of bringing them there once.)
her Loves-me, Loves-me-not Ruffle Dress. darling for fall:
and her Phoebe Ruffle Neck Dress. add some skinny jeans, leggings or tights for the cooler months:
wow. her stuff is simply amazing!
this is just a small sampling-- you can go here to see more of her lovely creations!
thanks again, Lori, for this awesome opportunity!
congrats Briita! the headband will look absolutely adorable on one of your darling girls!
also many thanks to Kim for letting me host the giveaway!
we had a super fun and busy weekend with grandma and grandpa. LOTS of visiting, kid swapping, a little park time and a quick photo shoot of my SIL Ruth's family.
here is her sweet baby Mariah who is just shy of one year old! love the little tuft of hair!
I'm pretty sure the entire population of women just raised their hands.
if you didn't, then may I suggest a shrink? kidding.
remember back when I did the CSN giveaway where I asked you to share your favorite cake/frosting combo? yeah, that left me drooling for days afterwards. anyway, after I announced Denise as the winner, it seemed only fair that she would share her recipe for Chocolate Raspberry Torte with me.
well, I finally had the chance to make it last weekend.
oh my it was amazing! and chocolatey! and richer than me!
although I'm not sure if it turned out right or not.
and now you're all saying really? why's that?
well you see, after I removed the cake from the oven and inverted it onto the wire rack, it was oh roughly the thickness of a graham cracker. yeah, no lie.
upon further examination of this rather skinny cake, I deduced that I had either a.) completely lost my baker's touch (not that I had much to begin with) or b.) no idea what a torte was.
so I quickly raced to the computer and googled it. and this is what I found out:
Torte: A dense cake that includes nuts, wheat, dried fruits, sometimes rum, and is not a light and fluffy cake as would occur with baking powder or baking soda.
and then it said: Tortes are a popular choice for groom’s cakes. what, so men are dense and women are light and fluffy?
okay, so a torte was supposed to be dense. so maybe I'm not as dense in the head as I initially thought.
I'll let you be the judge. does this torte qualify me as the next Martha Stewart?
hey, don't choke on your coffee now.
here's the recipe:
Chocolate Raspberry Torte
* 1 cup butter, softened
* 2 cups sugar
* 4 eggs
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1/3 cup baking cocoa
* 1/4 cup boiling water
* 4 teaspoons raspberry gelatin
* 2 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam
* 2 cups (12 ounces ) semisweet chocolate chips
* 2 cartons (8 ounces each) frozen whipped topping, thawed
* 2 cups fresh raspberries
* Line a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan with waxed paper; grease the paper. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine flour and cocoa; gradually beat into the creamed mixture. Transfer to prepared pan.
* Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. Carefully remove waxed paper.
* For glaze, stir water and gelatin until dissolved. Stir in jam. Brush evenly over bottom of cake. Trim edges; cut cake widthwise into thirds.
* For topping, in a microwave, melt chips; stir until smooth. Fold in half of the whipped topping until blended; fold in remaining whipped topping (mixture will be thick).
* Place one cake layer on a serving platter; spread with 3/4 cup topping. Repeat layers; top with remaining cake. Frost and decorate with raspberries and remaining topping. Yield: 12 servings.
enjoy! and thanks, Denise!
PS. we are anxiously awaiting the arrival of grandma and grandpa Kesti today. they will be in Flagstaff for six weeks! the kids are so excited, it's like christmas around here! they will finally get to meet Scarlett, their 67th grandchild. can't wait!
wait a minute. wasn't it just like yesterday that I was complaining about how sick and tired I was of being pregnant?
has it really been five months since Scarlett appeared on the scene?
let's see, she was born April 25th. so May + June + July + August + September = ohmygeezers 5 months!
well I'll be jiggered. guess it wasn't just yesterday.
anyway, at five months she's eating solid foods-- carrots, peas, beans, you name it, she gobbles it. she's also into sticking out her tongue-- where (or who) she learned this from, I'd rather not know. oh and she also just popped her first tooth!
sigh. miss Scarlett Jean is growing up waaaaay too fast.
gosh, before I know it she'll be trimming my whiskers, driving me to my colonoscopy appointments and scolding me for trying to make a pass at the handsome young docs! eek!
in just five short months, Scarlett has brought so much joy to our family.
babies truly are a blessing!