Friday, September 28, 2012

Kitchen utensils

I thought I would share a few of my favorite kitchen knick knacks and also ones that I think I should add to my collection.  Bear in mind that I have a tiny kitchen space so anything that I do own, I use!

#1 Wine bottle stopper
 My father-in-law made this and we have put it to good use!  I love how original and beautiful it is.  This picture does not do it justice!

#2 Small manual scooper
 My mom got this for me a couple years ago and honestly, I don't know how I ever made cookies without it.  Well, I do remember, this just makes it SO MUCH easier!  I wish I'd had it 20 years ago when my sister and I had our cookie business going!  This also is fantastic and scooping out fruit from melons and such without having to cut the whole thing up in to bite-sized pieces.

#3 Olive oil sprayer
I'm sure this is not the correct technical term for this little baby.  I saw this at my sister-in-law's house and was immediately in love.  You just fill it with olive oil, pump it a few times and then spray!  Perfect for greasing pans and scrambled eggs!  It basically replaces Pam in my kitchen.

Now here are a couple things I need to just hunker down and purchase.

#1 Cheese slicer
My kids eat a lot of cheese.  So does my husband.  Pulling out the cutting board and knife every time is not the most time-efficient option.  This would make grilled cheese sandwiches even faster as well.  Yes my siblings and parents, I still like to have peanut butter on my grilled cheese. :)  

#2 Nut chopper

Since making my own granola and clif bars recently, I have realized the beauty in a nut chopper.  Try cutting up a bunch of pepitos on a cutting board and not getting them all over the table and floor and you'll understand.  

#3 Pastry hand mixer

I think I would make my own pie crusts, biscuits and other dough products more often if I had one of these bad boys.  I had one in New Zealand which was wonderful because you couldn't buy ready made pie crusts there and we had chicken pot pie once a week.  It just gets old to try to "cut in" the butter using two knives.  

I want to make sure you know though that I am so thankful.  I have far above and beyond what I need in my kitchen.  Can you imagine life without running water or having to stir a fire to cook your soup?  

But I'm curious, what is your favorite kitchen apparatus?  

Camp explorers

We are trying the enjoy the outdoors as much as possible before the snow comes.  This morning we decided to wander around camp.  I basically just followed Chloe who was following Nate meandering up and down hills and around cabins.  Camp has gotten a bit more quiet in this shoulder season so I don't mind the kiddos wandering near the cabins.

Can you spot Nate in this picture?

Girls will be girls

My good friend Tifney's daughter Adley is right in between my two in age.  She and Nate have always played together, but the tables are turning and Chloe is getting more fun now that she is a year and a half.  We picked Adley up to go play at the park the other day and here are a few pictures from our adventures.  

These girls giggled at each other for most of the ride

Then they held hands without being asked to on the way to the playground

 Next they had a tea party in the little play house at the park

And what was Nate doing?? Boy stuff.  

Unorthodox Shower

I know this picture is not the greatest, but I could not get the little Bug to stand still.  After Nate goes to the bathroom in the morning before or after breakfast, we put him in his big boy underwear and clothes.  So during the two minutes it took me to run upstairs and get clothes for him and Chloe, he decided to give her a shower using the toilet water.  This was not the first time... or the second.

Thankfully, he had flushed before bathing his sister... but still... eewwww!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Book Review: Robinson Crusoe

I recently finished reading this classic that I had been eyeing for sometime but have never read.  It takes me a little while to finish a book these days as I read a page or two a day at night before I can't keep my eyes open any longer.  I wouldn't say that this is a "can't put it down" type of book, but it was still entertaining.

It is mostly a descriptive of his life and how he came to be stranded on this island, how he learns to survive and thrive even, and how he eventually escapes.  There were small nuggets of wisdom embedded in the story though that gave me good food for thought.  Here is an example:

"So little do we see before us in the world, and so much reason have we to depend cheerfully upon the great Maker of the world, that he does not leave his creatures so absolutely destitute, but that in the worst circumstances they have always something to be thankful for, and sometimes are nearer their deliverance than they imagine, nay, are even brought to their deliverance by the means by which they seem to be brought to their destruction." (Daniel Defoe pg. 244)

All in all, it was a pleasant read if you can get past the cannibalism.  Not my favorite part.  Probably not one that I would read again, but now at least I can say I've read it!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Pushups with dad

If you are looking for a good work out, you can borrow my kiddos.  I was trying to do some crunches this morning with both of them sitting on me.  Here is a video of a few days ago of Joe doing some pushups.  He had already done quite a few by the time I got the camera out. ;)

Sleeping sometimes

I thought in honor of neither of my children taking naps today, I would share a random assortment of recent photos I have taken in regards to sleeping.

A rarity for Nate these days

This is more like it 


When Momma gets frustrated and just needs a moment, Elmo helps

Sweet first-born snuggling with Doggie at night

Chlo-bug sleeping on top of her rabbit

Reno Aces game

We got to go to a Reno Aces Baseball game about a month ago with some of the ZP staff.  Nate LOVED it and was getting into the cheers and everything.  He actually made it on the big screen when dancing to some song.  He even scored a new tee-shirt.  We might have to wait a couple years until he can wear it though.  Chloe enjoyed the first few innings and then we walked around for most of the rest of the game.  It was a lovely day though and we enjoyed the time together.

A date with a hottie

Joe and I had a great date last Saturday.  We hadn't been on a date in a long time so it was much anticipated!  The babysitter arrived after the kids had gone to sleep for their naps and we hit the road... As far at the top of camp to the parking garage.  I was a little confused, but then I saw the Morton's (Joe's co-workers) jeep!  He had arranged for us to borrow it for the afternoon!  We took the doors and the top off and then were cruising up the East shore.  First stop was at Kings Beach on the north shore.

We enjoyed sticking our toes in the sand, read together out of the book we are studying in our Married Couple's Group, and remembered to flip every 15 minutes.  It was GLORIOUS not having to worry about children.  Then we grabbed an early dinner of take out burritos and drove up to the meadow near Mt. Rose.  

We walked out in the meadow and found a good place in the sun to eat and chowed down.  After dinner, we headed back down to Incline where we took a small off roading trail and stopped the jeep to change into some nicer (and warmer) clothes.  


Joe had packed a small bag with options for me as well as jewelry!  I've got a keeper I tell ya!  

Then we went to a nicer restaurant for dessert before heading home to put the kiddos to bed.  It was a lovely refreshing date!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Tifney's shower

My dear friend Tifney delivered her baby a couple weeks ago.  It was actually the day we left for Zion National Park.  Two good friends of mine and I threw her a shower this past Sunday.  It was really fun and hopefully a blessing to Tif.

Here are a few pictures from the day.  Props to Erin Ebright for the gorgeous photos!

My first attempt at making raspberry filled chocolate cupcakes.  Not bad I might add.  I decorated them with the male symbol since she had a boy.  Finn Lee Spoelstra.   I also decorated with a baby picture each of Tifney, Josh and big sister Adley.  Kenna brought some daisies from her yard that she had put in blue food coloring to change their color.  

LOTS of babies! No I am not pregnant even though I look it in this photo.  

Erin and I made a "diaper cake" and one of the games was to try to guess how many diapers were used to make the cake.  


We had fun playing some "Baby Olympics"!  The first game was "Pin the sperm on the egg".  It was followed by the photo walk and drop, the "dirty diaper" candy guessing game and lastly the pacifier spitting contest.  :) Props to my hubs for drawing this uterus.  

The kiddos having fun

Chloe is the big kid now! I love this photo by the way of the 3 hostesses and Tifney and their little ones.  

We were all purty and stuff so we took a family photo.  

Another stormy evening

We were at Regan beach a couple weeks ago to meet with our Married Couples Group.  It seemed a bit risky to be meeting outside given the condition of the sky, but I'm so glad we went.  Such beauty.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Beach flash back

Its been getting a bit chillier here in the last few weeks.  It still warms up a bit during the day, but you definitely need slippers in the morning and a sweatshirt in the evening.  I thought I would post some pictures from a month or so ago to try to prolong the summer.   We spent a lot of time down at the beach this summer and as the water was warmer than usual (still incredibly cold though), the kids got a few swimming lessons in.

And of course, my little kids love playing on the "dangerous rocks" which gets all the nearby parents and grandparents a bit stressed.  This girl is actually pretty good though at rock climbing!  Check out those shoulder muscles!

Coffee, take 23

I'm not sure when the last time was that I sat down to drink a cup of coffee and finished it all in one sitting.  I tend to warm my morning coffee back up numerous times until it becomes my afternoon coffee.  And even then, I don't always finish it.  Its debatable about whether drinking coffee is healthy for you or not.  I don't really care at this point though, I like it... lots of sugar and cream as well!  That may change when I get older and wiser, but right now... bring on the addiction!  Its not like 1/2 a cup a day is really going to hurt all that much either.

Anyway, better go get my coffee out of the microwave and let it sit until it gets cold.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Sacramento Zoo

We had a fantastic time exploring the Sacramento Zoo!  Nate had a great time watching all the animals and Chloe loved it as well.  I think the giraffes were both kids favorite!  I had bought a living social deal for the zoo and it also included the rides, so the kiddos got to enjoy the train and the carousel.  You can check out the photos below...