Friday, March 30, 2012

Family Time

Today has been a great day! Philip was home today, so he stayed with the two older kids while Caleb and I went to check out the spring Cash in The Nursery consignment sale. I got some great stuff (and waited in line for an HOUR, without A/C to check out!)

We (all five) took naps this afternoon in the rainy, thunderstorm-y, perfect napping time of the day.

 This evening, I thought it would be fun for all of us to build some cool buildings, bridges, houses, etc out of blocks along, over and around Keenan's train track.   It was!

One of Philip's masterpieces

A few of my creations

Philip and the kids at work

All finished!

Another angle and Moriah and I being goofy

Fun stuff!

This is what Caleb did while we were building =)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Planking: Part Two

So... the urge to plank hit me while Mark and Rebekah were here, as I mentioned in my first Planking post.  But, like my fixation with the Etch a Sketch in Mexico, it seems this phase in my life has also passed.  Here are the rest of the pictures of my "week of planking"...

 At Dairy Queen (probably my favorite one)

 Also at DQ

 Walmart

 ...and again

 ... and again

At Logan's restaurant


Restroom at Logan's
(was really hoping the sinks didn't break off!)


Do you see me?

Haha!

At home

Brittny!

 Last night, I got to see my friend, Brittny, for the first time since she and her family moved away last year!  Her husband, Brandon, is spending a year in Korea, so she and the kids moved to Alabama to be close to family while he's gone.    Brandon is home right now for a couple weeks of leave, and their family came down to Eglin for a few days.   It was soo awesome to see them!   We all had dinner together at the Storeys house.  Fun times!   All the kids had changed so much and Joel and Caleb were both born since we'd all been together!

Rebekah, Brittny and I with the little dudes

The best part?  Brittny and Brandon are moving Back here in the summer when Brandon is done in Korea!  Woohoo!

Monday, March 26, 2012

My First Pavlova

I made my very first pavlova yesterday. Why haven't I made one before now? I have no idea!! I have very fond (and yummy!) memories of my Grandma Woodford making these for desserts often (with whipped cream and peaches) when we'd visit when I was a child.

Most recently, Tim and Steph had a GORGEOUS one on their blog, and since I needed to make several desserts for an event at our house last night (and pavlova is naturally gluten free, which makes it okay for Rebekah S), it seemed like the perfect dessert to try!

Not nearly as artistic as the one Steph made and Tim decorated, but edible nonetheless =)


Here is the recipe that Steph shared with me:

The Best Pavlova (adapted from allrecipes.com)
-4 egg whites (room temp)
-1 pinch salt
-1 cup sugar (divided)
-1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
-1 tsp lemon juice
 
-1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
-1/2 cup icing sugar
fruit of choice
 
1. Preheat oven to 250 F/150 C.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Draw a 9 inch circle on the paper.

2. In a large bowl, beat egg whites on high speed until soft peaks form.  Add **3/4 cup** of sugar 1 Tbsp at a time, while continuing to whip.  Make sure sugar is completely dissolved.  Mix together the remaining 1/4 cup sugar with the cornstarch; lightly fold into merigue with lemon juice.
 
3. Spread a layer of meringue to fit circle on parchment paper, making the edges a little higher than the center.
 
4.  Bake for one hour and fifteen minutes.  Turn off oven, but leave meringue in oven for additional 30 minutes (I leave it until it's cool, but probably doesn't matter).  When cool, the meringue should be hard (and lightly browned) on the outside, and slightly moist on the inside.
 
5.  In a large bowl, combine the cream and icing sugar, and whip until thickened.  Decorate with fruit of your choice!  

Here's mine after it baked and cooled.  If you've never had pavlova, it is a delicious, light dessert that is crispy on the outside and has a soft marshmallow-like center.  



All dressed up...

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Gettin' Fit

Up until a week ago, I hadn't run in 13 months.   Ugh... that's a loooong break to take from running.   My body can attest to that.    With pregnancy and decreased exercise, I've picked up more than a few pounds along the way. =)  

Philip wants to get in better shape too, so we've started a "Couch to 5K" training program together, running three times a week.   The two youngest are in the stroller and Keenan rides his scooter.   It works well. =)

June 9th.   It's a big day.  My brother, Andrew, is getting married... and I'll be wearing a new dress. =)   Here's to a thinner, healthier, more fit me by June 9th!   Who's with me?

Prettying up our room

We've lived in this house for almost five years, and just in the past few weeks have I put things on the walls in our bedroom.

Before and After:



It definitely helps my case that the "before" picture was messy, right? =)

I had Andrew make the square frames for me when he was here, and I spray painted them and attached some dried crape myrtle branches to them with twine.   The crib rail piece, I made and featured a little while ago.

On the window, I had Philip hang some drapery hooks and I hung a "scarf" (that's actually what they're called!) to dress it up a bit.

Much better!

These took Philip a little to get used to... =)


I like how they turned out, and as Rebekah W pointed out, they will be super easy to redecorate however I want!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Homemade Pizza Pockets

I randomly decided this afternoon that I wanted to make pizza pockets for dinner, even though I've never done it! =)


I had no recipe, so first I went online and found a pizza dough recipe (at cooks.com).  I liked it because it didn't call for yeast.  (I have some, but who knows How old it is) =)  Here it is:


YEAST-FREE PIZZA DOUGH
 from COOKS.COM

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup milk
6 tbsp. olive oil
Making pizza dough the traditional way using yeast takes some planning so the dough can rise. This is not a traditional pizza crust, but if you're looking for a quick fix, this is it!
Preheat oven to 400°F.In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and stir well until the dough begins to form a ball and pull away from sides of bowl.
Knead dough by hand, while still in bowl, until smooth; then form a ball.

*Okay, me again (not sure how to get my regular font back after copying and pasting)....

You can literally fill these things with anything you want.  These are the things I chose to mix and match:


 broccoli, salami, ham, mozzarella, cheddar, red and yellow peppers and spinach

 I used the lid of my grater to make an oval cut out

 Spread it with sauce...

 Top with whatever floats your boat,

 roll up and pinch the edges to seal it shut
(I know, this picture is incredibly disturbing)

 Another combination of stuff

 I decided to brush them with beaten egg before putting them in the oven
(it helps give them a nice golden crust)

 Yes, they look strange - here they are all ready to be baked

Bake them for about 20 minutes (checking on them several times to make sure you don't overdue them).  I brushed them with egg again at ten minutes.

 Hot and toasty out of the oven!

Yum!   My kids even loved them!

Keenan's Easter Project

My little artist/crafter, Keenan is always eager for a new project (especially if I'm working on something of my own).    Yesterday I drew a bunch of eggs on a paper, so he could decorate them...

So intent, and doing a great job!

Then I cut them out and let him attach them to a "display frame"

I think they're amazing!

A little later, more filled up and with the eggs the kids decorated
(in their playdough "holders")

Thursday, March 22, 2012

People pics

Don't worry. Yes, this blog is still about people, not just projects. =) Here are some pictures from the last few days:

Keenan in a hilarious Mater mask that came in his birthday card from Grandma and Grandpa E.
(I have a strange feeling I already posted this?)

Close up of Caleb in his golf gear =)

Keenan with his cool Lego gift from Reagan and Hudson!

We were introduced to Settlers of Catan last week
(I was not a huge fan, and agree with Rebekah W, that's it's more like "Prisoners of Catan".  Philip, however, won his first game!)

The green bunch (it was St. Patty's day) ready to play

Keenan got a haircut!  (Before)

After (he was a little apprehensive about losing his curls, but I assured him they would grow back quickly).

A cute picture Keenan drew of our family
Truck on the left, then Philip (holding a TINY Caleb), then Keenan, Moriah and Me =)

Caleb chillin' with his buddy, Joel, yesterday

So cute!

After Joel left, Caleb took a nap! =)

What a sweet boy

He graduated to his pack'n'play yesterday
(no more swaddling for this boy!)