Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Woo hoo!  The time has come... fall. My FAVORITE and most unproductive time of year! The time of year when we all want to bust out our cozy pajamas and slippers, and live off of soup and hot chocolate. Here in sunny Florida, it doesn't get super cool until about January... except for an occasional cold day here or there. 

Well, we have a whole week of cold weather! Highs in the 60's and lows in the mid 30's. For us this is a nice break from the 80's and 90's. 

{on a side note, I really think something recently set up shop in our fireplace, and it's borderline freaking me out.}

So, I made Vegetable Beef Soup last night... It wasn't my best, but Mr. Shaw seemed to like it, because he kept telling me over and over how good it was. Granted my hormones are so jacked up right now, things aren't tasting right, anyway. 

Here's the recipe. {I'll post the picture when blogger stops being ridiculous and let's me.} 

Vegetable Beef Soup
1-2 lbs stewing beef {or chuck roast cut up} same thing
1 carton SWANSON Beef broth {don’t skip on the Swanson, it really makes a difference}
1 can Swanson Vegetable Broth
1 can diced tomatoes {w/ juice}
3 large carrots peeled and sliced
1 large russet potato peeled and cubed
1 medium onion cut like you’d slice an apple
3-4 stalks celery sliced
3-4 cloves garlic chopped fine-ish
1 can green beans {w/ juice}
1 can corn {w/ juice}
~1/2 c. elbow macaroni or pasta of your choice
thyme {my FAVORITE}
salt and pepper to taste

Brown the stew meat a little, on medium heat with some salt, garlic powder, pepper, and toss in the celery and onion with it. add the broths, veggies and seasonings. I just sprinkle it in until it smells right to me. Turn the heat up to medium high and let it boil until the carrots and potatoes are softened {about an hour-ish} Toss in some macaroni noodles {or rice or whatever you want} let them get to your desired softness and dig in. 

Stay tuned, because there will be more soups to come! Until it gets hot again.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

The BEST Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Now, everyone has their cookie "type". Mine is chewy. These are simply the best cookies I've had/made to date. They are so rich and flavorful. I've made... 4-5 batches in the past month or so. No, I'm not kidding. I make about a dozen and then put the rest of the dough in ziplocs and freeze it. That dough never sees the light of the oven. We {Jeffrey and I} devour it before it makes it that far. It's seriously the best. Want me to shut up now, so that you can go make some? DO IT. 

Let me tell you one thing, though. Pay attention to her notes. Particularly the sea salt. Seriously, don't use table salt. The sea salt MAKES these cookies {and any others, honestly}. 

That, and DO NOT over bake them. In my oven, about 10 minutes seems to be perfect. So find what works for yours. Remember that they keep baking on the cookie sheet, so while they look undercooked, they will be perfect after they cool. 

Okay, go make these cookies. You can thank me later! Then, thank Alice Currah, for making this amazing recipe! 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Pumpkin Patch!

We took the kids to the pumpkin patch last night. 'Cause you know I've gotta get some fall pictures! It was rough. I don't think I would ever be a child photographer... it's WAY too much work. Seriously. I don't have the patience for that mess!

This would have been SO much better if the sun hadn't come out RIGHT as I snapped this picture and made Bailey's hair glow blindingly, but I liked the shot anyhow. 

Same with this one... on the pumpkin.

He's been in a rough mood the last few days. I'm not sure what the deal is. 

 Callen was climbing down and fussing. I offered him a piece of candy and he smiled, jumped up there and put this innocent little look on his face. {I just remembered that I forgot to give him the candy. I guess he forgot too.} DOUBLE win for me!

My beauties.

This one is my FAVORITE.

Anyway, here are some of the ones I was able to get. Enjoy! I think we will be carving our big pumpkin tomorrow. I'll post pictures after I clean off my SD card, 'cause it's full.

Our Punkin' is 2 months!

I would love to have stats for you. I forgot about her appointment on Friday and made other plans; so, I had to cancel it. It will be a couple of weeks before we go back. She is definitely growing like a weed though! She FINALLY, has gotten to where she will sit alone in the bouncer or swing for 10-15 minutes and doesn't cry because she isn't being held at all times. She has pretty much slept through the night from the get go. THAT is pure mercy and awesomeness. She is SO smiley and sweet and happy. She doesn't like sitting in a wet or poopy diaper. So she pretty much cries when she is hungry, soiled, or tired. She farts like a man, so there is the occasional gas cry, as well. She's pure sugar... sweet as can be, and MELLOW. So far anyway. I am PRETTY dang excited about the prospects for a mellow child. She does have a temper. She still won't take a pacifier and isn't a fan of the bottle. She will take the bottle if she's super desperate and it has breast milk in it. Formula, however... she gets downright offended, insulted, and just pissed. Honestly, though... it's Alimentum. That junk is pretty gross. 

I couldn't decide between the first and last picture... you tell me... which one is the keeper, and don't say both... not an option... I'm running out of room to store pictures... I've got to start narrowing it down.

Picture 1 or 3 people?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


We have been having a serious overdose of the terrible two's lately. I am at a loss for how to even handle this boy {Trevor}. Spanking doesn't work... and we've been doing that a lot lately. Generally I reserve spanking for things that are dangerous. The poor kid hates getting them, but once it's over and he's back to mischief, he forgets until he hears the words. By mischief I mean things like, ooooh, ya know:

Unbuckling his car seat... and I don't mean the harness, I mean the actual seatbelt that holds his car seat in. Thank you Nissan for only putting ONE latch system in the back of the car... idiots. Trevor thinks it's hilarious and fun for him to flop his car seat all around and manipulate it while we are en route. Which means, I have to stop the car, unbuckle him, pull his pants down and give him three spankings. Then pull up his pants, buckle him back, re-buckle the seatbelt and start driving again... just to do it all over a little while later.

Running down the road... he also thinks it's fun to unlock the dead bolt and go out the front door. Usually he just goes out front and turns on the water hose and plays in it. He's graduated to running down the road, laughing all the while. My mom was watching the kids for a couple of hours a week or so ago, and he did this. Bailey and mom were flipping out because they couldn't find him. Mom went out side, and low and behold, he was running down the street. But wait, there's more, two of the neighbor ladies saw him and were trying to catch him to get him out of the road. This, of course, freaked him out. So, he started running hysterically. Once mom got him, it took a while to calm him down. You would think that would have served as an adequate deterrent. NOPE. Homeslice ran away from me the other day. OF COURSE, he gets his but beat for pulling crap like that. Doesn't deter him, though.

Eating my brown sugar... yep. This boy skips out on the non existent cookie jar, and goes straight for the goods. He climbs up on the counter {sans chair or stool}, unscrews the lid and goes to town with both hands eating my brown sugar. Bailey did this too, I can't blame them, it's delish, though raw like that, makes me want to gag a bit.

Climbing up the garage door... you heard me, all the way to the top. Though, it's pretty easy to do, with the ledges and all... and he's done worse.

Violence... he thinks it's awesome, to pull handfuls of Bailey's hair out. Which I'm sure does hurt, but when she gets frustrated, she does that to her self. She has since she was younger than Trev. Still, it 's just mean. This morning, they were both laying on the floor and I heard her start crying and walked in the room and he was kicking the crap out of her face non-stop. Seriously, he was doing the back stroke, sans hands, on her face. MAN, was I PISSED. Talk about restraint.... it took some not to beat him. Instead I picked him up by his legs and carried him to his bed and plopped him on there and shut the door. He KNEW, he was on the verge of serious trouble. It's not just her. It's Callen and his friends, too. I mean part of it's just the testosterone and age. It's still unacceptable, regardless.

Drugs... for over a year he's been able to open child proof lids. Who designed those things anyway? They should be fired. In fact, I gave Bails some Tylenol earlier so her face wouldn't hurt so bad. Stupid me forgot to put it back up in the cabinet and I walked in the kitchen and there he was, guzzling. So, I'm freaking out. Thank goodness for the internet. These sites were helpful in determining how much is too much. Mayo Clinic and Yahoo Answers. It also helps to pay attention to where the crystallization on the bottle ends. That way you can determine how full the bottle actually was. There were 160mg in 5ml. The acceptable amount {91mg/lb of body weight}, is far above the amount that he took, thank goodness. He took about 5mls. I'm sure a tummy ache is in store... but thank goodness I knew that quiet is never good when Trev is around. I wish he'd just been in the sugar again...

The Ipad... he has figured out that if he takes all of the pillows off of our bed and piles them on the floor between Jeffrey's dresser and the bed, that, he can, in fact, stand on them, climb on the dresser, get the ipad, and get back on the bed.

Tattoos... He found a pen, got on my bed and drew all over his arms and legs. When I looked at him, he says, "What? I just drawing on my body like Uncle Chad...". My little brother just got a new tattoo and I guess Trevor saw it and well, that's pretty logical in the eyes of a two year old, so I didn't punish him. I just explained that we don't write on ourselves.

So yeah, I've been on my toes and frustrated beyond belief. These are just Trev's shenanigans. It doesn't even touch on all the tantrums, lack of focus, impulsivity and foul attitudes of Bailey, or the mimicking that Callen does when he sees Trev doing them {like hitting and pulling hair, or climbing to the back of the van instead of in his car seat, or fighting me when I try to buckle him in}.

Fun times, folks. FUN times.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

General Conference

In case you haven't figured it out yet, I'm a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints  or in other words I'm a mormon.

Twice a year we have what's called General Conference. In April and October we get to hear our Prophet and Apostles and other leaders in the church speak via satellite. I LOVE listening to the talks. There is such a sweet, peaceful feeling to the meetings. It lifts me up and gives me wisdom, understanding and perspective. 

If you are curious about what we believe, now's a good time to listen. There are different ways you can listen now, thanks to technology. You can watch it on the BYU Channel if you have satellite TV. You can also stream it on the internet. 

So I thought I'd invite you to take a peak and see what we're all about. How often do you get to hear a living prophet speak?