Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Things you do not want

Things you do not want to hear out of a 5 year old's mouth: "I don't know what happened, Mom! The water just exploded out of the toilet!"


"Hey Mom, did you know that babies hatch from eggs inside their Mommy's tummies?" - Preston

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


B: "Mommy, I love you, because you have BEAUTIFUL hair."
Me: "Awww, thank you B, I love you too."
B: "Because I'm so good to you, but Preston isn't."

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Final (?) Backyard Project!

Today we picked up our 6 espaliered trees: three 4-in-1 Apple and three 4-in-1 Asian Pear.  I think I'm in love.  We lined our back fence with them and they basically look A-MAZ-ING (in my humble opinion, of course!).  I think we are officially out of room, except for 1 grape that we still need to get that has a designated spot.  I know you can't see them all in the picture, but seriously, don't they look pretty spectacular?!  Much better than a boring white fence!  We're actually working on espaliering (is that a word?) a peach tree ourselves, but that's going to be a work in progress for quite a while.

I think we have finally finished our never-ending projects in the backyard and the garden is officially ALL PLANTED...maybe now John will have time to work on the Vespa restoration!

Now, to figure out a way to keep Jasper from eating them...
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The Magic of the Tube

There is no better toy in the world...except maybe a big cardboard box!  I was totally shocked that it actually held all their weight.

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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sidewalk Chalk

= Jasper's latest favorite "food"

What kind of a dog craves CHALK?!  We can't keep her away from it...she keeps snagging pieces and sneaking off into a corner of the yard to chow down.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Spring Garden

Mystery blossoms...this is a "Fruit Cocktail" tree that has 5 or 6 different fruits on it.  I can't even remember which ones they are now, so I have NO CLUE what these blossoms are for.  But they're pretty!
We (well, John and the boys) planted about 2/3 of our tomato plants outside this weekend, but we still have some more to go.  Our latest outdoor project (which included some new garden beds!) is now complete except for some finishing touches (sprinkler system...John's job!) so theoretically I could plant them.  The weather just needs to cooperate with me!  Sunshine please!
The kiwi's are going crazy.  I am longing for them to fruit, but I'm skeptical based on other people's experiences.  I'll try to stay optimistic though!

Backyard Boys

New favorite activity (that gives me a heart attack)
Made it!
See Mom?  No problem!
Only Mr. B can pull off an outfit like this!
Serious concentration while using some heavy machinery
B clowning for the camera
Preston informing me that he did NOT want his picture taken.

1, 2, and 3

It seems like I've been blog-neglecting again.  I really want to make a conscious effort to REMEMBER things.  I want to remember what the boys are doing and what's going on in our family.  And all I can seem to take the time for is a quick picture or QOTD sent from my phone.  So today, that changes. 

1.  Preston.  We got out his shorts from last summer (size 5) and they are too small around the waist, but he's still swimming in the bigger sizes.  He's definitely the outgoing one of the bunch.  He will talk to ANYONE about ANYTHING.  I'm not sure that he has a shy bone anywhere on him.  He recently started riding his bike without training wheels, but he doesn't go very far before he completely panics and crashes.  No major injuries yet!  He loves to "rescue" worms and put them into the garden.  He loves to water the plants in the garden as well.

2.  Bryton.  Little B is still...little.  He's recently had a bit of a growth spurt though, and he's fitting nicely into his 3T clothing and even a couple of 4T shirts.  This is a big deal for B, who gets mistaken for Archer's twin on occasion.  He's going through a bit of an attitude phase right now...he's definitely testing his boundaries!  Playing with worms is a favorite of his as well, and he is always wanting to help - especially outside.  He loves to help plant things in the garden, and wheel dirt and/or rocks around in his wheelbarrow.  He also loves to swing and wants to go as high as possible.  Still working on pumping though.

3.  Archer.  I can't believe how big my baby is getting.  He's wearing 2T clothes and has a gigantic belly.  :)  He's closing in on 22 months, and I'm amazed at how quickly it's gone (despite the lack of sleep).  He LOVES fruit.  He will frequently request an orange, then when I start to give it to him, he says he wants a banana.  Then if I say "banana or orange?" he'll say "two."  Then he goes back and forth between banana and orange, teasing me until I give up and just give him one or the other.  It's much cuter in person than typed out on a blog, I promise.  He says a few 2 word sentences, but generally he's still very into non-verbal communication (ie: temper tantrums).  He does everything possible to keep up with his brothers.  He has mastered the climbing wall on our play structure outside, and loves to play in the dirt.  He also loves splashing in puddles.  He tried to help me plant beans outside the other day, but he tried to eat the seeds.  Oops.

Mom Inventions

Not inventions BY mom's, but rather inventions that seem to be specifically FOR mom's.

Ballet flats.
Empire waists.

And (I'm going to show my dorkiness here)...skorts.  For years and years, I steered clear of them.  I can't stand the name of them.  My mom used to make me wear these shorts that looked like skirts when I was little that we referred to as "skorts", and I thought it had scarred me for life.  Then I came upon what I thought was a cute skIrt.  On sale.  From a brand that generally fits me.  I ordered it. 

Oh wait, it's a skOrt.

And I fell in love with it.

Now, it doesn't matter if little boys are tugging on my skirt (still can hardly bring myself to call it by it's rightful name).  It might APPEAR to be slightly indecent, but it's really not.  Oh, and I can also chase little boys in it too.  I can wear it around the house AND look halfway decent to go out in public (or at least looks like I intended to look halfway decent).  I can bend down to pick up a toy or various other object that got chucked across the room, and even if it's in public, it's okay.  I won't flash anyone.  I think I could probably even ride my bike in it, if I chose to do so, but I'm still working on a way to transport all 3 boys via bicycle so that's a no-go anyway unless John is around. 

Definitely a mom invention.  And I just bought another one.  This is what happens when you turn 30.

Monday, May 16, 2011


QOTD: Dad, would you mind if I shaved my beard? - Preston

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


"Hey Mom, if you peel my orange for me I'll give you some money." - Preston

Overnight Oatmeal

The boys L-O-V-E oatmeal.  It is the most requested breakfast in our house, hands down.  I got a really good deal on some steel cut oats a while ago so between that and the 25 lb bag of rolled oats from WinCo, we're pretty stocked up. 

About a year ago, I decided to try to figure out a way to cook the steel cut oats in the crockpot.  They take a long time to cook, but the boys think they're pretty yummy (I am not really an oatmeal fan), so I figured it was worth a shot.  Let it be known that I am NOT a morning person, so overnight oatmeal was kind of a necessity! 

Overnight Oatmeal
2 c. steel cut oats (you can also use any other whole grain...I frequently do 1 c oats along with 1 c of rice, barley, or some other combination that equals 2 c total)
8 c. water
honey or some other sweetener (obviously optional, but my kids love honey)
I've also added mashed up bananas, applesauce, craisins/raisins/dried fruit, etc. but plain is their favorite because then they add insane amounts of frozen blueberries to it in the morning.

First, grease your crockpot.  It can get a little messy and stuck on around the edges.  Mix all the ingredients.  Cook on low 8 hours.  That's it!  Wake up to already-cooked-breakfast, and blindly scoop it into the kids' bowls while making a nice cup of green tea.  (Archer ate 4 bowls, Preston ate 3 bowls, and Bryton ate 2 bowls of oatmeal/rice with blueberries this morning.  I'm pretty sure that is their favorite combination!)

Now as soon as I finish cleaning up the kitchen we are headed OUTSIDE to work in the garden and clean up from the final phase of the backyard project that is almost done!  The weather forecast for today?!  72 degrees and SUNNY!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


"WOW!  I've never seen any baby do that in the history of kung-fu!" - Preston, watching Archer climb in and out of the pack-n-play.

Monday, May 9, 2011

The Bad Part of Spring

It's in the 60's.  Sun is shining.  I'm wearing chaco's!  SPRING!

But today I was reminded of the downside to spring weather.  The boys THINK it's HOT outside (Preston told me today that it's summer!), so they play with water and get themselves all wet, muddy, and sandy.  The problem with spring is that it's still too cold to hose them off outside!  So much for my clean house.

That is my one and only complaint about warmer weather.  That's all I got.  I guess the positive part of winter/snow/ice is that it's more difficult for the boys to get dirty.  I'll remember that next winter.  Otherwise I'm a happy camper, since I recovered from my random stomach sickness over the weekend (yeah, on one of the rare days when I can do whatever I want, I get stuck puking my guts out.  Happy Mother's Day to me!).

Friday, May 6, 2011

Raw Sprouted Hummus

We eat a TON of lentils around here.  They are so yummy, good for you...and you can't beat the price.  (I love WinCo bulk food section!)  I started sprouting a bunch of lentils earlier this week (we're having some for dinner tonight) but I sprouted more than we need for just one meal.  We usually just eat them plain, on salads, sandwiches, etc., but this afternoon I made a yummy hummus out of them!  I'm sure this would work just as well with any other sprouted legume, but since I have a gigantic colander of lentil sprouts sitting on my counter, obviously that's what I used. 

3 c. sprouted lentils
2 cloves garlic
1/4 large onion (or so...I just had part of an onion sitting in the fridge and used it...I think more onion would be better but was too lazy to cut up another one!)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lemon, juiced
Fresh parsley (just threw this in because I have an abundance of parsley, I'm not sure it really added anything to it)
1-1.5 tsp cumin
salt & pepper to taste...I think I probably used about 1/4 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper.
olive oil for blending

Toss everything but olive oil in blender (vita-mix!).  Turn it on low speed and add olive oil until it blends freely.  I HATE using the plunger on the vita-mix so I always do everything possible to avoid it.  You could definitely cut down on the olive oil and use a plunger though. 


I have been really focusing on eating more raw foods lately, but I get kind of sick of the standard green smoothie & salad rut that I seem to fall into.  I have also been experimenting with raw (blended) soups, but I don't think the weather is nice enough yet for me to truly enjoy a soup that isn't hot!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Spring Garden

Guess where I am?  Outside.  At 9:00 am.  Without a coat!  The boys are playing in their sandbox (scooping up sand and pretending to "feed the chickens").  I like N. Idaho once again (at least for today...but if the weather turns bad again tomorrow, I reserve the right to retract that statement).

It is actually looking like Spring around here.  I get so excited when things begin to turn green again.  Check out our little spring garden:

Peas!  I'm actually getting ready to plant another round of these but waiting for our last project to be completed first so I have a spot for them.  Realllllly hoping for this weather to continue tomorrow because John has the day off and we could potentially get the project finished...

Out of control raspberry patch that desperately needs to be thinned.  Anyone want some starts?!
Hardy kiwi.  We have 3 of these and it was a little questionable whether or not they were still alive, but all 3 have buds!  (I'm glad I didn't listen to John who thought we should do away with them because they looked so scraggly.)
Strawberries.  We also have strawberries going in our small AeroGarden, and we have blossoms on those!  I think we'll be planting them outside soon though because they have outgrown their indoor living space.  Hmmm...maybe a job for this morning!
One of our new blueberry plants that made the journey back from Oregon with us.  This is a dwarf variety (Top Hat) and it's planted in a watering trough, along with 2 other blueberries and some strawberries.