Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Best of Granola's

I know this post should have some happenings of our lives, but, its not, sorry!  Soon maybe?  I did want to put a recipe here though that I don't want to lose!  The best granola I've made yet.  I found this recipe online and tried it out this morning and its great.

The Best of Granola's (Jill Abegg - she wrote a book called Eat Well Stay Well Spend Less but I don't have the book.  Maybe I should buy it since this recipe is so good?)

6 cups rolled oats
1/2 to 1 cup wheat germ (I played it safe and used 3/4 cup)
1 cup unsweetened coconut
1 cup nuts (I used pecans)
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup sweetened coconut ribbons
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup oil (I used coconut)
1 1/2 cups honey (divided, and I used 1/2 cup maple syrup to replace some honey)
1 cup dried fruit (optional)
1 tsp almond extract (essential and I don't even like almond extract much)
2 tablespoons vanilla extract

Mix dry ingredients together (except dried fruit).  Mix together 1 cup honey/maple syrup and oil and extracts (heat slightly if using coconut oil).  Mix wet and dry together.  Spread out on a couple baking sheets and bake at 300 F stirring every 10 minutes or so until nice and toasty (mine took 30-40 minutes).  Pour granola into a big bowl and drizzle on up to a 1/2 cup honey and stir well and allow to cool.  Store in a tightly sealed container.

Man, that drizzle of honey at the end helps it all stick together a bit and really makes it awesome!  I will keep you posted if for some reason it also makes it mold or do anything gross sooner than other granolas!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Paul’s Birthday!

Paul turned three!  He’s a big kid now; oh, wait, he’s not cause a big kid in my book is potty-trained.  Oh, well, he’s older at least!  Grandma and Grandpa came for a quick trip on his birthday (though you can’t tell from the pictures cause they aren’t in them!).  We had chocolate cake with fudge-y icing and a few presents.  His big present was his cedar chest which is like John’s except I swapped the brown and blue colors.  I didn’t get any fabulous pictures of it, but I’ll work on it, maybe even some side-by-side’s with John’s.  Oh, and I had to add in a photo of John and of Ruthanne’s crazy hair style!

Paul can be the sweetest cuddliest thing and he can also be the most frustrating child!  Still, can’t imagine life without him!

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Really Cute Stuff

Since I haven’t really posted anything cute for awhile, I thought I would put up some of the cute/fun photos we have taken for the past while.

A ward primary temple trip was our April activity.  A temple worker took the kids on a tour outside the temple and talked to them about some things (what, I’m not exactly sure cause I stayed and followed Paul around while Ruthanne and John kept up with the main group).

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They were taking photos of families outside the temple, but I just wanted a quiet moment with the kids (and Luke was inside the temple, so a complete family photo it would not be anyways), so we walked around to the other side and I snapped the above photo of the three.  While we were doing this, I ran into my cousin Kimberly!  Small world!

We also took a boat down the Augusta Canal with our homeschool group.  Here is one side of the boat looking for the turtles (and then the turtles they were looking at). 



A trip to Brunswick the week before Easter.  Our trip was extended so Ruthanne could spend time with her BFF (cousin) Hannah.  Hannah was the only one enthused with my marbled egg dying kit.  Oh, well, I can say we dyed eggs at least!

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Our trip to Jekyll Island where the lady talked me out of the history tour on the trolley with the kids.  We played on the huge oaks instead.  Well, I clicked the wrong button, so to see these click the image below.

A trip to Brunswick is never complete without a trip to Barbara Jeans (or so I think anyways!).  And, a trip to the pier which is extremely nerve-wracking even with the additional fencing.  Thankfully we didn’t lose anyone!

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A trip to the park with Mimi which ended when a bunch of high school students invaded.  And, yes, Mom, this is as good as it got!


Ok, so I think that got me through the photos already on the computer, but now I’ve downloaded more recent photos (including Paul’s birthday) so will start a new post about that!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Paul is back in diapers

It stinks! I don't like to fail! I want him potty trained! Wah wah wah! I thought we were making progress, cause he took himself to the potty once Saturday and then Sunday at church he told me he needed to pee (and then peed on the big potty) and then kept his pull up dry for the rest of church! But, then, we come home from church and its nothing but pee, pee, pee in his underwear. I don't get it. I was going to put him in underwear this morning (and did) but then he peed in that pretty quick after sitting on the potty just recently, so he is in a diaper (cloth so hopefully it will be uncomfy and bulky and he will still feel wet when he pees). I hope to give him a little potty time every day so he will keep pooping in it (cause after all this I don't want to lose the ability to poop in the potty!). But really, two weeks of good solid effort and peeing every 30 minutes according to a timer and he still won't take himself to the potty? I'm done, be a baby and have a cloth diaper. So we will revisit this later I guess. I think Luke thinks I shouldn't have given up yet, but I think we will be refreshed if we revisit it later.

Friday, March 23, 2012

I don't understand... potty training related

OK, so sometimes it works out sometimes it doesn't. The past couple days Paul has been peeing in underwear constantly it feels like. He is just playing then pees. Normally he stops himself after he feels he is wet. But it is frustrating! I really don't want to give up. I feel like he gets the pee thing and he is amazing at pooping in the potty (and I don't want to lose that), but seriously how long will it take to untrain him to just peeing wherever? Cause I think he just forgets that he just can't pee wherever he is (like he could with diapers). When he comes to me saying he has peed or says I'm peeing (when I'm close), I make him take of his wet underwear and then sit on the potty until he pees more. I just made him practice playing and then running to the potty when he needs to pee.

I've also bought him a train and a cake (when you ask him what he wants he says that) and I plan on displaying it (train will come tomorrow) and giving it to him when he has successfully had a day with no accidents or when he can take himself to the potty when he needs to go or something like that. Cause he still hasn't decided he needs to go and taken himself to the potty yet. Seriously, the other kids got the pee thing quickly and struggled with poop and he is the opposite which is actually more of a problem (and more frustrating) cause of the number of times a day you pee! Grrrrrrr!!!!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

I need VODKA!

What has driven me so far to the edge you ask? My need to make more homemade vanilla extract! I've been wanting to write this post for a while and I hope no one will take offense. I have been wanting to make more vanilla extract forever, but I don't like buying the vodka. In fact I won't (wouldn't it be great if someone saw the LDS chaplain's wife buying hard liquor?). So, I need someone to buy some for me. I'm gonna have to work on that. I am almost out of my homemade vanilla extract that was made almost two years ago. Its a bummer and I'm gonna have to buy some and I know it won't be as good! But, I better get started cause that stuff takes a while to soak.

On another note, Paul is doing fairly well with the potty. We had a couple accidents today. One was bigger cause I didn't make him pee right after woke up this morning (his diaper was so full I didn't push it) and then the other time his underwear was just slightly damp (so he must have realized what he was doing and stopped, right?). We're making progress, right, Kelsey? I typically only make him try to potty every 30 minutes to an hour now. Hoping he is trained by the time we go to Brunswick! Now we probably need to seriously consider switching the crib to a toddler bed, not looking forward to that either!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Day 5 - I'm trained!

Paul is NOT! So, I finally figured out that if I set the timer every 15 minutes and have him sit, we don't have accidents! He doesn't go every time, but he thinks about it. This way he doesn't sit on the potty for long periods of time either. He's either naked or with a pair of underwear on. I'm hoping we will progress from this to independent pottying soon (or I will have to give up cause every 15 minutes, really?).

Oh, yeah, another reason we had this turning point is we made his monkey act out drinking, needing to potty, and asking Paul where monkey should pee pee. Then we put monkey on the little potty to pee.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Little bit of fun

This is the little bit of fun I let the big kids have this week of potty training torture.

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Potty training day 4 - mid-day

So, gave Paul gobs to drink this morning. He kept holding it, finally peed on the potty some. Then peed tons more in his pants a few minutes later, then a little more in the potty, then a little more on the floor. That all probably took place over 15 minute time period. Everytime he puts on clothes he pees. So now he is naked. He doesn't like that much (and honestly I don't really like it either!). He asked can I put on pants and I said nope we aren't putting on pants. His face lit up and he said hopefully "a diaper?" Nope, sorry bud, you may be stubborn, but I'm gonna try to wear you down! He is going to take a nap soon and I plan on putting a cloth diaper on him. Glad I held onto some prefolds and covers! We'll see what he likes better, peeing on the potty or wearing cloth diapers!

Editing to add: Well, he liked putting on the cloth diaper. He said I like it! Lame! Lazy boy!

Modest clothing sale

Downeast basics (modest clothing line) is going to be on sale today at zulily. If you aren't a member already will you use my link to join?

Starts at 9.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Paul Potty-ing Days 2 and 3

So day 2, hmmm, lots more pee in pants, some pee in the potty, and poop in the potty again. I dare say we have the poop down, pee not so much.

Day 3, we spent the morning in a diaper cause I had to get kids up early and out of the house to meet the food truck. Lots of traveling around and busyness. Came home put on undies and pants. Gave him juice to drink. Put him on the potty, nothing. Five minutes later soaked. Another 10 minutes after that, drenched. Seriously. Lots of sitting on the potty between those. Multiple other accidents, small amount of pee on the potty. I think the only time the kid has really let pee loose on the potty is when he is pooping and I guess he can't make it stop. Grrr. We are doing a potty adaptor on the big potty cause little potties are ick. But its hard to tell how much he is peeing and he has no idea (really you can't tell that pee is coming out your penis? Actually he gets confused and keeps telling me its poop.) so I'm gonna have Luke pick up a little potty on his way home tonight. I'm thinking it may come in handy to keep in the car for emergencies.

I feel like once he realizes the pee thing we will be golden but it just hasn't clicked yet. My plan for tomorrow, lots of water/juice/liquids and sitting on the new little potty while watching tv or something! Now that I've started I want it done! We've got the hard part over with (poop) lets just get the pee part!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Furniture from Costco?

I'm considering buying a new (leather) living room set from Costco (sight unseen). Has anyone bought furniture from them before? I'm thinking it is a nice set and its $800 off this month for a sofa, loveseat, chair, and ottoman. We do have a costco in town and it says we can return it (which would involve renting a uhaul) and we wouldn't be out gobs of $$ if it didn't work out (just the uhaul and gas cost).

Paul Potty Training Day 1

Its over, thank goodness (though Day 2 is likely to start any moment now)! I went back and looked at john's potty training notes on the blog and I think Paul doubled the amount of wet clothes John had on day 1. I'm surprised cause I didn't think Paul peed that often. We did have three poops on the potty today and after John's poop phobia, I'll take that and call it a success! So, I'm looking forward to a couple more days of total wetness and then hoping it gets better! I'm so glad I have Ruthanne and John to keep Paul entertained on the potty! Although at times, Paul wants them to go (three people in the toilet room is a little tight).

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

National Pancake Day!

The day I don't have to feel guilty for feeding my family pancakes for dinner! Yay! Last year I think I made America's Test Kitchen pancakes which are pretty good, but I had forgotten about my pancake recipe (its even better!). I can't even remember where I got this recipe, but they are awesome! Kara is the one who reminded me how good they were. So, in honor of National Pancake Day, I thought I'd post the recipe on the ole blog for posterity (and the rest of you!).

Blueberry (or not) Buttermilk Pancakes

2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 large eggs
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup blueberries (optional)

So, the original recipe calls for mixing wet and dry separately and then combining them. The problem with that, two bowls to clean! So, this is my cheat and it works for all kinds of things.

Melt butter in your big bowl in the microwave. Add in sugar, salt, baking powder, soda, and eggs. Wisk that up real good. Then slowly pour in buttermilk, wisking as you pour. Now, put your wisk in the sink and get out a rubber spatula. Put in your two cups of flour and fold/stir until combined (don't stir too much though!). Now, just cook like you do pancakes, putting in blueberries/chocolate chips/whatever you like right after your pour the batter on the griddle.

You can thank me later!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Hard Things

I don’t know why it is so hard for me to get the right words out of my mouth lately.  I start out and intend to say something and they get slightly off and never get back to the original point.  Take Sunday for instance, in Relief Society we were talking about Joseph Smith mostly, but there was a question in the back of the manual about how Heavenly Father does not call the qualified he qualifies the called.  Well, I totally feel that a lot.  I think my comment got off cause I mentioned there are some days I don’t want to be the Relief Society President.  Well, some days that may be because I am being lazy but I have had some days lately that it is because I don’t know if I can do what I have to do that day.  Its much easier being the chaplains wife and letting my husband help people through hard times than doing it myself.

Sometimes things also feel overwhelming.  One reason we took the week off from school last week.  And, I really didn’t get to declutter the whole house.  I did a good bit though.  I’m hoping to squeeze in more here and there.  My bedroom is mostly whats left and its probably the worst cause I leave it for last in everything because I know I don’t let anyone back there but us!  Soon, though, gotta make sure Luke is around for it though, at least half the clutter is his!  Hmmm, see already off topic.  I’m sure this is a learning experience of how to juggle lots.  My brain feels so forgetful though.  This too shall pass.  I know we have been blessed in that when I need to be able to visit someone or do something, Luke is available to watch the kids and then when he is super busy things are a little calmer on my front. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Sweet and Sour Pork

This recipe I got from the Our Best Bites cookbook.
We really liked it and I made it as written with a pork tenderloin and apple jelly.  Well, tonight when wondering what was for dinner I realized we had a package of pork chops in the freezer and thought I would throw them in the oven with the sweet and sour sauce, success!
So, what I did, mix together the sauce in a bowl (I used apple butter, so sue me, all I had in the house on a Sunday afternoon).  Then I spread about half the sauce in a glass pan, put 6 pork chops on top of the sauce, then topped the chops with more sauce.  I covered it with foil and baked it for half an hour at 350.  Then I flipped the chops over and moved them around to mix back up the sauce.  I put them uncovered in the oven for another half an hour.  Perfection!  We had them with baked potatoes, but that sauce would be lovely over some rice (probably what we will do when we eat the leftovers Tuesday).

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Taking the week off...

from school only. Things have been hectic here and I feel the need to go through the house and pare down and organize and clean (once I can see more surfaces). Maybe once I get rid of half the contents I can keep to less clutter? Ha ha. Goodness, I'm making myself seem like a hoarder (I promise I'm not!).

Hope to let the kids do some art projects, play outside (though not with the neighbors, they are grounded from that this week), and read some books, oh, and help me get rid of stuff! Maybe we will shop for John some new glasses? Get done a few projects I have been wanting to get around too?

Normally when we take a week off from school its to go somewhere, like Mimi & Poppa's house (not Grandma & Grandpa's this time of year, Grandma's too busy with taxes). I'd really like to run away, but running away won't help. Hoping more peace and comfort to many friends having a rough go of it right now.

Squash Casserole

Cause I almost couldn't find this when I needed it. Yummy stuff. I don't do the butter on top, just pancko breadcrumbs.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Yummy Dinner! Beef Curry!

Luke and I always forget how good this is until I make it again!  We had broccoli alongside the curry and rice, super!  Can’t wait to eat the leftovers tonight!  From here:

My version below:

--1-2 lbs stew meat (I used 2)
--1/2 onion diced
--1 can coconut milk
--1 juice from one lime (3 tbsp from bottle)
--2 cloves chopped garlic
--2 tsp brown sugar
--1 tsp RED curry powder
--1/2 tsp ground coriander
--1 tsp cumin
--1 1/2 T curry paste
--1/4 tsp ginger

I put all the above in the crockpot on low and let it cook all day.  I then skimmed off a good bit of fat and put it a bit more coconut milk.  Serve over rice, and with broccoli, YUM!

I have made this before where I basically cooked the beef with a little water in the crockpot for a while, then drained the juice and added the rest of the ingredients.  Definitely creamier this way.  Yummy either way!

A picnic and adventure

Today was so nice we spontaneously packed up a picnic and headed down to the trails after finished our schoolwork.  I took along the “good camera” and took a bunch of pictures.  Here are a few!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Wilson Photos

So with all the Wilson grandchildren getting together at my house I decided it would be a good opportunity for a group photo.  I bought myself a little remote for my camera so we could take a group photo and it was so fun (best $4 I spent in a while)!  We got some good (and funny) photos too.

This is the best one I think:


But here are the rest too.

They make me laugh!  Now to get all the Pittmans together sometime.