Sunday, February 24, 2008

Teriyaki Chicken Dee Dee Style

As requested, here is the recipe we used for our blue and Gold dinner. We also served white and fried rice. For desert we had fortune cookies and a good old fashioned Costco cake.

Boil chicken thighs in water.
Cool and pull apart from the bone.
In crock pot cook with sauce and pieces of peeled ginger.2 cups sugar to 2 cups soy sauce to 2 cups water (that's the ratio, if you need to increase the amount of sauce to cover your chicken keep the ratio the same)
There is no specific cook time. Since the chicken is pre-cooked I think on low for a couple of hours should be fine.

Happy cooking!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Kate's Greatest Fears

I think Katie is a pretty even keeled child. She isn't overly emotional and in general has a pretty mellow temperament. But over the last few months I have started to see two very extreme fears begin to develop. This week has brought about episodes for both.

Two days ago I was volunteering at the school with Katie and Sara by my side and in the middle of my art lesson when the fire alarm went off. It was just a good old fashioned fire drill but it scared Kate to death. She immediately started running around the room hysterical. I tried explaining to her what was happening. It was just a practice. We were just going to follow the class outside. There was no real fire or danger. But poor Kate, her eyes as big as saucers, thought the building was coming down with us in it. The next thing I know she is running around the room trying to collect her most valuables and save them from certain death in roaring flames. Her most valuables just happened to be red vines that she had deposited in certain places. (a bag of them in our wagon, one at the desk she was working at and then there was the one on the floor she had dropped when the alarm went off) All of them had to be saved. It took brute force to pull her away. At the time it was sad to see her so terrified. Now I look back at her frantic attempts to save licorice and it makes me laugh. This all stems from the week we went to the school for a fire safety show. They had a smoke trailer. Dave took the kids in the van which quickly began filling up with smoke, alarms blaring. It was supposed to give the kids a realistic trial to help prepare them for the real thing. All it did was send Kate into hysterics. Dave had to be let out with crying three year old in toe. The rest of the night she begged us never to put her in the smoke again. Such trauma! This is when fire preparedness goes wrong.

The second source of terror for Kate is the idea of me leaving the house without her. Now this one is totally way out there. No...I have never left her at home alone. But every time she sees me go out the garage door, or even worse, start the car early to begin warming up, the next thing I know Kate is throwing herself out the door trying to make it to the car before I leave. And yes she is crying huge tears screaming "don't leave". No matter how much I try to talk sense into her, No I'm not leaving without you" "I just am going to warm up the car" she is on the verge of total meltdown until she is safely in the car! This one is never funny. It actually drives me nuts. I can't even talk her into reason she is so out of control. And having to deal with a nutcase every time I got out the garage door gets a little old.

Poor Katie. Will she forever live her life in fear of fire and abandonment?

Chinese New Year Cub Scout Style

Wow! That's all I can say. Just, Wow! Oh, and then there's, yeah it's over! And I can't forget, thank goodness for Den moms and just Moms in general!

What a night last night was. Dave and I have been preparing for last night for forever. At least it feels that way. There has been lots of thinking, planning, running around shopping, meeting with our commitee, asking for ideas, oh yeah and spending our entire weekend last weekend making a dragon. Other than Dave and I just being too crunched for time and not being able to have things all set up early enough everything went really well. And even that wasn't too bad because we had so many people helping us out. Except that for those of you that know me can probably guess it made me really grumpy.

We had a great guest speaker. He even made me want to be Chinese as he spoke about how much respect for elders was important in their culture! (was that Chase who just ran by after we asked him to help set tables?)

The food was fantastic. Dave asked me this morning if I had already taken Dana Spears left over food back to her. I said yes and he was sorely disappointed that he couldn't eat it himself.

The best part of the night though was as expected our dragon parade. It was complete with a festival dragon, little masked dragons running around, some very dragon sounding webelos, authentic festival music and best of all (in the minds of most of the kids) fireworks! OK so we were in the church and couldn't have real fireworks, but the bubblewrap was just as fun!

Enjoy the video!

A week of Origional Works

So crazy me...I brought up the idea of doing a really cool project at a committee meeting for the PTA and surprisingly I was put in charge. I didn't really mind until I realized I would have less time than I thought to actually work on the project and that I would be doing it the same week of our Cub Scout Blue and Gold Celebration and a week before their Pinewood Derby. Way to much for any sane person to handle. I must be insane for even attempting.

The project I am working on at Emily's Elementary school (Chloe Clark) is going really well mostly. I have gotten at least half of the teachers to participate. And most of the artwork is turning out really nice. The idea is that the kids produce a work of art (hopefully something really colorful) that I can turn into the Original Art company and then can be reproduced onto many different things. They kids can buy magnets. T shirts, stationary, coffee mugs, mouse pads, key chains etc... with their very own artwork on it. I love the program. The second best part is that it is actually a fundraiser. We will get to keep 40% of the sales earned to go towards art programs for our school. Maybe art supplies for teachers, funding for an art club...I don't know.

I have really enjoyed going back into classrooms and teaching again. I think I will for sure go back to teaching when all the kids are all grown up. That is if some poor school will have me. It has been so fun to see the kids get excited about the project and their artwork. Spending up to five hours a day volunteering at the school with Sara strapped to me and Katie tagging along behind (except for the two blessed days without her !Thank You friends!) has been less fun! I am exhausted.

I have to post some of my favorite pieces just so you can see what I've been up to and I can remember why it was all worth it. So here are my favorites...posted without permission so don't tell!

Emily's artwork is the peacock.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Chase's Love Language

Again I have no clue. Chase is such a mystery. For those of you that think you know him well enough you can vote on the side. Maybe I'll give him the quiz :-0

If you are interested in taking the test yourself, here it is. Have a go!


So this is Chase five years ago! Not much has changed. He still loves to play battle. Here he is pretending to be Link from Zelda (actually he called himself Zelda but I don't think he knew it was the princess). You have no idea how much I love having a boy. I loved the way he would go through the house talking to himself as he rid our home of villianous evil doers. He has always been so creative and independent.

It's chase's turn to find out what I love most about him. Honestly it has taken me so long to get to "his" post becuase I haven't really known what to say. With the girls there was one obvious thing that stood out. Not so with Chase. But the more I thought about it I was fianlly able to come to a conclusion that I thought worked.

I love how sensitive Chase is. Sometimes this makes for tears when he fears he's been wrongfully accused. His sensitivity occasionally is more problem than blessing but I wouldn't have him any other way. The first signs that pointed to the tender creature that Chase would become came when I was pregnant with Emily. Baby girls make me so sick. As I would sit in the bathroom pucking my guts out Chase would stand over me patting my back telling me it would be OK. He was also a cuddle bug. (only to me and Grandma DeWitt though) He would come over and sit with me, blanket in tow and just snuggle. Speaking of his blanket...his sensitivity also presented itslef through his attachments to things. Like the blanky or his collection of stuffed animal pokemon and especially his stuffed teddy bear FUZZ.

Currently he has been showing that sweetness of his a little more than usual. I frequently catch him holding Sara and snoozing with her. Of all of our children he has bonded with her the most. The other day he asked me to bring her to school for show and tell.

Also he has started thinking a little more deeply about his relationships with his sisters. He has really been trying to be a better brother and to earn our trust. When he messes up and gets in trouble it almost breaks my heart to see him looking so disappointed in himself.

I think it is really sweet to have a son that cares so deeply and thinks so profoundly. I hope he will be a wonderful husband some day. Just like his Daddy

PS... for those that are wondering Chaseroni is Chase's nickname.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Love At Home

So Valentines started around here a week early when Dave surprised me with tickets to see the Pacific Northwest Ballet preform Romeo and Juliette! I wasn't just surprised, it went way beyond that. More like a total shocker. For those of you who don't know, I have some serious ballet roots and I love, love, love ballet. Taking my girls to see the Nutcracker every year is totally way more for me than it is for them :-) I was so excited to go after our friends the Crawfords offered to adopt little Sara for the night. I seriously wouldn't / couldn't have enjoyed the preformance if Sara would have been with anybody else. Who wouldn't feel comfortable leaving their baby in the care of four awesome "Mommies"! It was fantastic. Such a wonderful evening. But what made it the best was that Dave sacrificed so much (he really HATES it) just becuase he loves me so much!

Dave and I heart attacked the kids room for Valentines. It wasn't easy trust me. Chase didn't go to bed until 11:00 because he is so wrapped up in a book. Then in the girls room every few minutes Emily opened her eyes and looked at us in confusion. You try surprising an insomniac and the lightest sleeper ever. Not an easy task!!! They loved it. Katie woke up and said during breakfast, "When I was sleeping it went cock-a-doodle-do and I waked up. And there were hearts everywhere and I said WOW!" I think it was a great way to start the day.

Later in the afternoon Katie and I went to get lots of Valentines balloons to go surprise Dad. We filled up his truck, and left him a card and chocolates. It was a total labor of love since he works 45 minutes away! All in all (including getting the balloons) we were in the car for 2 1/2 hours! We got totally lucky that Dad ended up having some walk in patients, because we found out later that he almost got to come home at 2:00. We didn't even get there until 2:10! I would have been beyond grouchy if my surprise would have flopped! One of his assistants noticed the balloons and they all went out to see. They gave balloons to kids for the rest of the day and Dave said he still had a hard time driving home. Obviously it didn't quite go as planned. The vision was to have the ballons burst out of the car into the sky when he opened the door.

Even Zeke had a great Valentines thanks to Grandma Wilcox. She sent him a puppy stuffed animal and he hasn't let it out of his sight since.
I love Valentines. What better reason for celebration could there be, than to celebrate our love for each other!!!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

A little bit insane!

Poor Emily came home from school yesterday and said, "You know what happened to me yesterday that was a little bit embarassing to me?" I had no clue. A few things run through my mind all of which totally embarass me but don't even phase her. What could embarass my invincibly unembarassable daughter? She countinues, "I opened up my lunch and there was just a bread sandwhich. Nothing in the middle. Just two pieces of bread. I ate them anyway because bread is good for you and it has lots of protien.(my guess is that they are learning about the food pyramid and she hasn't quite got the hang of it)" I was dumfonded. I had packed her an empty sandwhich! Poor emily... just bread for lunch. She is such a forgiving good sport. I was so out of it yesterday, all day. I even took a nap to try to pull myslef together. Oh well! I packed her an extra yummy lunch today :-)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sara's two-month photo shoot!

One of the things that makes my life so rich right now are my friends. I have so many wonderful friends and they are all crazy talented. Thank you, thank you for all you do!!!!!

Here are some amazing pictures of Sara at almost two months. She is so sweet. I think my friend really captured her sweetness so well. There are so many fantastic pictures, but here are some of my favorites.

Isn't she getting so big!?!

Sock Hop Smash!

Dad was really a super hero this week. A knight in denim jeans :-)

Flowers for his girls.

Dad got to take his girls to yet another fantastic DuPont Daddy Daughter Dance. This year they outdid themsleves with a 50's theme. I walked into the school gym and wanted to be a child myself or a Dad or something so I could stay. The girls were given menus they could order from at the diner (converted cafeteria booth). They could choose from mini hamburgers, onion rings, milk shakes and other yummy treats. All that was missing were waitresses on rollerskates! The tables were decorated by goddesses of entertaining. Each table had it's own theme having to do with the 5o's. There was a poodle table, a soda fountain table, an Elvis table and the girls sat at the cotton candy table. The music was perfect for dancing. What a fun time it must have been to live in. To make the evening perfect they had a special surprise appearance by Elvis who managed to make the girls swoon...even Emily.
Look at Dave's dance moves.
Kate with her friend Lucy cutting a rug!
We had so much fun getting ready. It was so cool to have the girls dress up in poodle skirts! I even found cute glasses to go with their outfits. Dad brought beautiful corsages when he picked them up at the door. He was dressed up as a greaser of course. The girls loved that I fussed over them so much. There are only two times a year I let them wear make-up. Halloween and the Daddy Daughter Dance. I tell you what, my girls are going to be heart breakers. They are so pretty and sweet. A total package. Look at those eye lashes!!!! Dad even took the girls in the
date night vehicle (his truck) to our local pizza place for dinner and then it was off to a night on the dance floor.

Emma's two cents:
My favorite part of the Daddy Daughter Dance was dancing with Dad. I loved that he did all the tricks with me. My favorite is when he slides me under his legs and flips up into the air.
Katie's favorite:
My favorite of the night was eating cupcakes. I liked dancing with Daddy and Lucy. I liked putting the lipstick on. I like the poodle on my skirt!

Monday, February 4, 2008

When Smiles Turn Sour

AAAGGGHHHH! Dave and I are reaching that point way above our heads. You know, where your Mom used to put her hand up to her forehead or above, and say, "I've had it up to here..."

Katie has beveloped a really horrible habit whenever she gets into trouble. Which unfortunatly is happening with more frequency. Actually it's kind of allarming. I worry that any day now my precious Kate will turn into a big girl monster. I had such hi hopes for her. I really thought she was the one that just wouldn't ever get into trouble. My parents had one, and I'm pretty sure Dave's did too. So it's in our genes. She is this little Dr. Jekyll / Mr. Hyde! During the day when there aren't any big syblings around she is an angle. Then in tazmanian devil style...the kids come home from school, you see her winde up and she's a whirling girl of naughtiness. All you can do is endure until bedtime. Thankfuly, so far, after a restful night of sleep she awakens sweet as can be. Wo wo wo be the day when she doesn't give me at least half a day of sweet Katie.

So what is the nasty habit you ask? She smile or laughs or both whever she gets in trouble. You have no idea how it gets your blood boiling when you are disciplining a child and she's looking you right in the eye and smiling or worse laughing! At first we were spanking her when she responded that way. We both thought it was just outright in your face disrespect or something. But does a three year old know how to be disrespectful? It was just so out of character for Kate. Soon we noticed she would hide or cover her face when ever she got in trouble. That's when we decided it must be a nervous reaction. Horrible as it is. And even though it gets our blood boiling we are trying to just ignore it. So pray for us to have patience. Heaven knows were going to need it!