Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Today we celebrated Halloween. C decided he wanted to be Wolverine so we had J dress up as Spiderman (or Spiderbaby as we dubbed him) to go along with. I had a realization that this may be the last year I can do something like this as J will probably want to have a say in his costume next year.

Our first adventure was a party at my office for all of the employees' kids. It was really fun to see everyone's kids all dressed up and having fun!

Our second adventure was at a local Trunk or Treat. In addition to the trick or treating they had music, a bounce house and a train ride. We were also able to meet up with the boys' cousin.

I think everyone had a good time today, although we have enough candy to last a lifetime!

Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Homemade Oreos

I love Pinterest! Long story short I had to make treats for my grandma's birthday party tomorrow and work on Monday so I decided to make two different items so I could have some variety. Originally I was going to make peanut butter chocolate chip cookie bars and double chocolate chip cookies. The bars were done without any issues. I did however run into problems with the cookies - I was down to my last cup of sugar and the recipe called for twice that.

So I decided to look through a few of my favorite websites and found this recipe pinned on Pinterest. Since I had all of the ingredients on hand it seemed like a winner.

Homemade Oreos
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
1 cup sugar (note: the original recipe suggests between 1-1 1/2 cup but I found them plenty sweet with one cup)
1 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 stick of butter
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (note: I just used very run of the mill Nestlé cocoa powder)
1 large egg

In a bowl mix all of the ingredients except the butter and egg. Once they are mixed together, add the butter and then the egg until it comes together.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Drop rounded teaspoons of dough onto a greased pan and press them down slightly. Be sure to space them 1 1/2-2 inches apart - these cookies really spread out. I ended up with 32 cookies (these are quite a bit bigger than store bought Oreos). Bake for 9 minutes and let them cool. Once they are cool, it's time to fill them.

1/4 cup butter
1/4 shortening (you can do half a cup of butter if you don't want to use shortening)
2 cups powdered sugar
2 cups vanilla

Cream the butter and shortening together. With the mixer on low slowly add in the sugar, then the vanilla. Once it is mixed beat on high for 2-3 minutes. Take one a your cookies and spread the cream on with a spatula (pipping it with a pastry bag would work too). Press the second cookie on top and voila - homemade Oreo!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Then came the rain...

Sometimes I think rain can get a bad reputation. It is considered gloomy and unwelcome. But to me it is refreshing.

Tonight was a struggle. I dealt with exciting things such as a child getting sick to his stomach and a clogged drain. Needless to say I was ready for bedtime. But by the time it rolled around I was feeling anxious and was beginning to worry about things I can't control.

Then came the rain...

As I was laying here, worrying, the rain began. I felt immediately calmer. It's like all my worries flowed out with the rain. Thank you God for the rain!

Check out for other blessings.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The State Fair

E and I decided to take the boys to the State Fair today. Unfortunately it was about 95 degrees today (it's October - I'm getting really impatient for cooler weather!)
The boys are a little too young to go on many of the rides but we thought it would be fun for them to see some of the animals and have some funnel cake.

We first went to where the livestock were on display. The boys were amazed to see so many sheep in one place (and I thought about all of the nice wool that they were wearing). We headed to the poultry area afterward and C asked me if we could buy a chicken! Then we went to the petting zoo.

Here is C - he was a little afraid but we told him they wouldn't hurt him so he decided it was okay.

J wasn't afraid of them at all! He would walk right up to them and say hi and pet them. We had a hard time convincing him to leave.
Next we found our funnel cake (after thoroughly washing our hands of course!) We also let C try out a game. He wanted to play the balloon dart game. He popped one on the first try!

Here he is with his prize!

What an adventure today!

Project C.U.R.E.

On Friday some of my coworkers and I volunteered at an organization called Project Cure. The organization serves a very cool purpose - they provide medical supplies to hospitals in developing countries.

We spent a few hours sorting medical supplies that had been donated by hospitals and other medical offices. I was absolutely amazed how many different pieces of medical equipment there are and we weren't even dealing with any of the sophisticated medical stuff. Our boxes were mainly sutures, catheters, medical gowns and items like that. They leave the more complicated things to retired doctors to sort. They also have biomedical students come into test some of the equipment too.
We sorted our items into these boxes and then they were boxed up. The filled boxes are put on containers and shipped to the countries that need the supplies. This was a very worthwhile way to spend a few hours!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Latest WIPs

I've started on the last (well hopefully the last) toy that I'm knitting for Christmas. I've settled on doing Bea the Basement monster from The Big Book of Knitted Monsters. He is being knit in the colors of my BIL's favorite soccer team (Chivas). I might have to call him Sonny the Soccer monster or something like that. Right now he is working up fairly easily though I had a few issues with the color change.

My other project is the blanket for my friend's baby. I'm still decreasing - I've got about 170 rows to go. It's still a while from being done but it's much more encouraging for the rows to be getting smaller, not bigger. Plus I have a little more time to finish it than I thought. Yay!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

School party

This morning C's school had a little party so I decided to take the boys. It wasn't much, just a bounce house and some balls, hula hoops and jump ropes. The boys had a lot of fun though. They also had hot dogs and sno cones. Yum!

Sunday, October 9, 2011


Today I'm linking up with Gretchen over at He Sows and She Sews for the weekly blessing party. This week one blessing that has stuck out for me is music. I love the way music can reach out and touch a person's soul. I find it a great way to worship and some times express feelings that I can't articulate myself.

I have quite a long commute to work each day so I get a lot of chances to listen to music - and sometimes sing along :) One song that has been on recently has been stuck in my head lately. It's a song called "Hurricane" by a group called Same State. The chorus really seems to sum up what I've thought at times:

But all at once
Heads are spinning faster like a hurricane
Cause all we did was nothing but a love still came
And it's bringing in good news
A love is coming back
For all of us
Who have a hard time getting it in through our brains
That all we did was nothing but a love still came
And it's bringing in good news
That love is coming back like a hurricane
Like a hurricane
Like a hurricane for you

That's the amazing thing - I did nothing deserving but God still sent the ultimate love for me and everyone! It's so hard to wrap our heads around that idea but what an amazing blessing. And I'm so blessed to hear music that can touch me this way.

More knitting progress

I finished (for now) the ladybug toy I'm knitting for my niece for Christmas.

It's based off a really cute pattern I found on Ravelry. I actually can't believe there are only four projects so far (including mine). I did make a few modifications - I did all black on the bottom instead of black and red like the top. I also knitted the spots instead of making pompoms - I ended up using the spots from the giraffe in Itty Bitty Toys that i had mentioned trying in an earlier blog post. The only thing I can't decide on is whether to make a face or not. The pattern doesn't call for one but it might need one.

Now I just need to make one more toy for Christmas - the monster for my nephew. It will definitely be one of the monsters out of my Big Book of Knitted Monsters but I still need to pick one. I also have to finish the other two fleece blankets and do a couple of hats for my boys.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


C is really into his Trio block set. He is always coming up with new ideas of things to build - houses, flashlights, jetpacks, etc. Tonight he made a dog and it was so stinkin' cute that I had to get a picture.

Of course when he saw me doing that, he decided to do the same. But first he had to make the camera out of blocks.

J wanted to get in on the action too!

He may be missing the point just a little but what a cutie!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

No sew throw

I am finally getting around to making the blankets from the fleece I bought a few months ago. These no sew blankets are seriously the easiest thing to make!

First I laid the fleece on the floor with the printed pattern on top of the solid piece.

I used a pencil to mark out the cuts I needed to make. Each line is spaced an inch apart and is three inches deep. Three inch square blocks are marked at each of the corners.

After that I began cutting the slits. You can see the square cut out of the corner. I also safety pinned each corner to keep the blanket lined up properly.

After the strips are cut, simply tie the top strip to the bottom. This can be done one of two ways - either tie it so the same color always shows up on top or alternate so they are different. One other trick I use to keep everything straight is to tie off the strips immediately adjacent to the corners, as well as one in the middle of each side and then tie the rest.

After all of the strips are tied, the blanket is done.

Only two more blankets to go before Christmas!

(This post is linked at I heart Naptime)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Vacation day!

I took the day off work today. It was nice - granted a few days would have been better but this was still fun! The best part about the day was I got to hang out with each boy individually. C had preschool today so J and I walked (okay I walked and he rode in the stroller) to Starbucks for breakfast.

Looking at this picture I can't believe how fast he is growing up! There is very little baby left; he's almost totally toddler-like.

In the afternoon I got to spend some time with C. E stayed home with J while he took a nap so I took C to get some ice cream and to the play area at McDonalds. He had a good time playing!

I also squeezed a little knitting time in. I'm more than halfway done with the ladybug that my niece is getting for Christmas. Here's the top half and the bottom is about 10 rows from completion.

I still need to make the head and the spots. Rather than doing the pompoms the pattern suggests, I think I'm going to use the spots from the giraffe in the itty Bitty Knitting book so they lay flat. I'll have try a sample first. Can't wait to see how it turns out!