Thursday, November 30, 2006

Pasta Milano

The Scrapbook crop was fantastic! We all had such a good time. I truly enjoy spending time with this group of ladies. The page kits were a total hit! Talk about having a great time, we laughed the entire time.

The page kit was for an 8½x11 recipe page, fairly simple in structure but it looks great! The color and design were very pleasing to the eye and the ladies were very happy with it. They also couldn't wait to try the recipe on their own.

Here's a picture of the finished page...I love it!

The joys of Scrapbooking

It can be a little frightening designing a scrapbook layout kit. Will people like it? Will they smile and pretend to like it? All that has been running through my head for the last couple of days. Well I'm going to take the plunge and just go for it. Not everyone has the same style or taste when it comes to scrapbooking or for that matter Pizza.

I'm going to have them trying new things today. I'm pretty sure that most of the ladies have never inked the edges of paper or card stock. For the ones still working in the simple get it done CM way, this is going to rock their world! The others I know are a little more advanced and this should be a lot of fun for them in general. I might even have them stamping on chip board and cutting out and all kinds of fun stuff. I'll fill you in later on it all!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Is it Wednesday already?

Can you believe that it's already Wednesday? This week is going by fast. I've got to get Hannah in for her blood work up some time this week, it needs to be done before her pre-op appointment on the 11th of December. We received good news in the mail yesterday... our insurance has approved Hannah's surgery (thank you Lord for listening to and answering our prayers). I'm not sure how much ($ wise) is going to be covered by the insurance and what part we're going to have to pay, but I'm willing to hope for the best.

I'm not one to have kids spend the night on a school night but I made an exception. My son Andrew asked if his best friend Drew could sleep over. Sure what the heck, they're 14 years old and a bit more responsible than say a pack of 10 year old girls. Oh my gosh what a delightful evening. No screaming, no slamming doors and I absolutely did not hear "Mom" being screamed once (whew). I had help cleaning up after dinner and they were quietly playing downstairs, alright so they were playing video games...but they were having fun and that's what matters. They even got all of their homework done:) I like it when I don't have to hound my children to do their homework. It was a great evening for all of us!

I picked up my Stampin Up order and all I have to say is WOW these little ATC albums are adorable!!!! The new mini winter catalog, well lets just say that I'm glad that I can shop from it for 3 months. Tons of great stamp sets and just as many great project ideas to go along with them.

Now to gear up for the day...I need to check out my calendar and see what is going on. I've got a feeling that I've got some serious baking to be getting done and some recipes to be writing up.

The weather is a bit warmer today than it was yesterday, currently it's 5 above zero versus yesterday of feeling like minus 8.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

You Know...

It's days like these that have me shaking my head and wondering. Wondering about what you ask? Here it is...I drove my kids to school today (yes again) because of 2 reasons
1- being that Andrew had to wear his JR ROTC uniform again (apparently when you miss a Monday you have to make it up). With it being so darn cold, there was no way I was sending him out wearing it and not having on a heavy winter jacket, hat and gloves. I can drop him off near the front entrance of the school and the boy just walks 20 feet to the door.
And 2- Hannah had to be at school early today for some project she's working on at school.

So where am I going with this right? I absolutely cringed when I saw a boy walking (not sure if he's in high school or middle school) from the apartment complex that's about a half mile from the high school wearing only a hooded pullover sweatshirt. No hat on his head (not even the hood to his sweatshirt), no gloves, obviously he didn't have a coat on and this boys face was bright red from the cold. Now, from the 30 seconds that I was outside to warm up the kid mobile, I was without a hat on my head my ears were bright red and burning from the cold by the time I returned to the house. Oh yeah you can be certain that when I came inside I immediately grabbed a hat and put it head! Now, do the parents of these children not realize that frost bite can set in rather quickly when the weather is this raw? Are they ignorant or what? Then I drive a little further only to see some kids walking from the trailer park that's near the Vandenberg school (that's 4th and 5th grade) again no gloves or mittens, no hats on any of them and one had on what looked to be a thin wind breaker and it wasn't even zipped up. It breaks my heart to see this kind of thing going on. I'm all choked up just thinking about it. I want to beat some common sense into the heads of the parents of these children. Talk to your children about winter weather, the signs of frost bite and show/teach them how to dress warmly.

So now you're probably saying...what if they can't afford coats, hats or gloves? There are programs out there to get their children FREE winter wear. Trust me it's available, I know this because my son just finished collecting coats for a Coats for Kids drive through his high school JR ROTC program. Hundreds of clean ready to be worn coats were collected. Our church is currently collecting hats, gloves, mittens and scarves, again for those in need of such items all FREE of charge. Are you too proud to wait in line to get your children FREE winter wear? Then by all means go to a thrift shop, Good Will or Salvation Army store and purchase one. But for heaven sake, don't send your children off to school in this kind of weather without proper clothing! To me, sending your children out in this bitter weather wearing a hooded sweatshirt or a wind breaker is a form of child abuse. Obviously I can't save the world, but I can try to make difference in my little corner of it.

It's a blustery Tuesday

So here it is, O'dark thirty and BLINK! I wake up just after 3am and no matter how hard I tried I was not getting sleepy. So I figure the best thing to do is to get out of bed and I did so right around 4 am.

The wind is just howling outside, it sounds like a freight train roaring on past my house (no, it's not a tornado). It's a steady 38-40 mph wind from the North (it's the cold from the North coming down to say hello). Yup it's cold out there with the wind chill it's a whopping -8 outside. This is going to be a good day for the marinated beef stew I've got planned for us for dinner. With cold weather like this, we're going to need something to warm us up from the inside out!

As I look at all of the stuff I have going on this week, I have this overwhelming sense of peace about it . I've got things planned out, meals 3/4's prepared and ready to go into the oven, outfits to wear and so forth. I'm not going to get my hair done at the salon this time around, I'm just going to wear it down. No need to stress myself out over nothing in particular. From worrying about getting an appointment before the kids get home from school and being ready before 5 pm, to having something good for the kids to eat before we leave for the Holiday Formal. Too much undo stress there, so I'm opting out of getting my hairs done up.

On to scrapbooking...I've got an idea of how I'm going to approach my picture a day scrapbook layout. This project can actually be a lot of fun once you get over certain obstacles in your mind (this is where my creative side has to give way to the practical side). I'm going to keep it simple with clean lines, using the same fonts, colors of card stock and embellishments through out every page. For me, this will be quite a challenge since (as you all know) I love every color of the rainbow and all sorts of embellishments. I'm hoping that others will do this project with me and let me know how they are coming along with it. I look forward to making these pages for my Book of Me. Pushing myself to scrap about something every single day in the month of December, it'll be interesting to say the least.

My Kitchen Wish List

We all have these little wish lists in our heads about certain things we would like to have I'm just writing mine and putting it out for all to see.

For my Future Kitchen
  • 6 burner gas range or stove top
  • double ovens- one being a convection oven
  • refrigerator with water tap on the inside and pull out freezer drawer
  • stainless steel lined dishwasher
  • chest freezer
  • one handle faucet/sprayer
  • under mount sink


  • potato ricer
  • kitchen scale
  • tall pepper mill
  • sil-pat (2)

Pots and Pans

  • the 2 burner Calphalon grill pan
  • Calphalon roaster pans with lift out rack
  • 8 quart Calphalon dutch oven
  • pumpkin shaped cake pan
  • snowman shaped cake pan

Small Appliances

  • Kitchen-aid hand held mixer-pink
  • 10 cup Kitchen-aid coffee pot-red
  • wide mouth 12 cup Kitchen-aid Food Processor-red


  • Soup Tureen
  • Fiestaware Sauce Boat-shamrock

Have you laughed today?

I don't know about you, but I certainly love a good laugh. I really got a good one from those "quizzes" yesterday. From the Broccoli Casserole Soda to my being 90% Thankful to being very honest at the same time having a B+ personality. Then there was being the "stuffing" of the Thanksgiving dinner. I was laughing myself silly with the answers.

Now take the plunge and go have some fun, go ahead take a know you want to (heh heh heh).You're going to laugh your socks off!

Monday, November 27, 2006

Do you have a Type A personality?

You Have A Type B+ Personality

You're a pro at going with the flow
You love to kick back and take in everything life has to offer
A total joy to be around, people crave your stability.

While you're totally laid back, you can have bouts of hyperactivity.
Get into a project you love, and you won't stop until it's done
You're passionate - just selective about your passions

How honest are you?

You Are Very Honest

You tell it like it is, no matter what.
Even if the truth hurts, you'll dish it out.
And while some may get hurt by your honesty...
At least everyone knows where you stand!

How Thankful are you?

You Are 90% Thankful

You're an incredibly thankful person, and everyone around you feels very appreciated.
You inspire people to be more optimistic, forgiving, and grateful.

What part of Thanksgiving are you?

You Are The Stuffing

You're complicated and complex, yet all your pieces fit together.
People miss you if you're gone - but they're not sure why.

What Jones holiday soda are you?

You Are Broccoli Casserole Soda

Vegetarians taste better!

It's Monday!

So it's Monday...I've already got the meals planned out for the week which takes a huge load off my mind. There's nothing worse than realizing that it's 6 pm and you have nothing planned in the way of dinner for your family. I find that the hubby and kids get a little cranky when you try to give them cheese and crackers for dinner...2 nights in a row.

I finally downloaded the pictures from my camera from our Turkey Day vacation. Yup, just as I thought...nothing but pictures of squirrels. It could be worse, could be that I took no pictures at all. Don't you find that rather funny of me, especially when I was pushing "taking pictures" during the holiday? I knew what I wanted to do, I had a layout in mind, certain types of photo's that I wanted to take and lets just say that no one was with me on the idea. Before I knew it, the turkey was hacked up and spread pictures of the golden turkey on a platter. The squash pie (as my m-i-l calls it) was burnt and someone was trying to put the blame on me, LOL! Yeah right, I wasn't even in the kitchen! Heck I wasn't even allowed to help out! The kids were all over the place and there was no way I'd be able to get a half way decent picture of anyone. So there it is, no Thanksgiving Day photographs. It's was raining and just dreary all day long. I'm looking at the pictures I did take and am thinking about the possibility of doing a layout on the squirrels.

The remainder of Mount Washmore is calling my name, it's all that delicate line dry stuff. I need to drag the suit cases out of the living room and toss them to the garage. I hope to get going on some scrapbooking today too!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

I've got one busy week ahead of me!

As I look at my calendar I see that I'm about to start another terribly busy week...with 2 back to back holiday formals to attend, 4 cheesecakes to bake, plus getting Hannah's blood work done for her surgery on the 20th, there's also a couple of dental appointments this week. Did I mention that I'm having a crop on Thursday and I'm teaching a cooking class this week too? Yes I dare say that I've got one busy week ahead of myself! But hey what's a vacation for but to recharge your batteries and get you ready to jump back into things?

I went grocery shopping this afternoon and I felt this overwhelming urge to cook. I've got 3 different meats marinating, all for 3 different meals this week. Teriyaki tri-tips steaks, pork roast marinated with fresh herbs and garlic and of course Parker's Roast Beef Stew marinating in a lovely Cabernet Sauvignon. Want to know where I got my recipes? Check out my network is awesome! I also made a pot of my vegetarian chili and a batch of chocolate chip cookies. I dare say that being on vacation and not cooking for a week got me feeling a little lonely for my kitchen. Yes it's safe to say that I'm back in the groove!

We're back from Boston

and glad to be sleeping in our own beds! As much as I like to spend time visiting friends and family, it always feels good to be back home surrounded by ones' own things.

Our trip was very successful in many ways!

1-My wonderful husband helped his mother to find and buy a new to her car. He did the home work and found quite a few of the one she was interested in, this particular car was found at a dealership in New Hampshire and lets just say that my m-i-l is VERY happy with her purchase. It's a cute silver gray Subaru Forrester.

2-We were successful in having our Christmas shopping done and gifts wrapped before we left to come back to South Dakota. In fact we were done BEFORE Thanksgiving! Oh my gosh the stores and their sales...who needs black Friday when there are sales like what we came across. I'm serious, the sales we came across were spectacular to say the least!

3- My husband was able to meet up with some of his old friends. Although the circumstances in which this occurred was not the best. The older sister to one of my husbands close friends had passed away and there was a wake being held for her. I stayed with the kids while I sent him off to pay his respects to the family. It really brings the sense of Thanksgiving home, to be giving thanks for what you have and the people that you have in your life. Being able to pay tribute to a wonderful woman, wife and mother who died before her time is only part of being thankful for all of the blessings we are given.

4- Turkey Day was great. My mother-in-law always has a huge enough to feed the entire neighborhood in case they were to stop by and say Hi. Pies...can that woman make a pie! Delicious is the only way to describe them! Did I take any pictures...yes and no. I have pictures of squirrels playing and that's it. The day I had planned to take pictures (I even packed the tripod for this trip) it was gray and raining all day long. Every day we were out and about shopping and it was too dark to take a decent picture inside of the house.

Did we do anything touristy? No, not on this trip. It's not as if we won't ever be going back there, so the kids and I didn't mind. I think that the kids really got into the shopping aspect of it all too. Andrew was able to find the video games he wanted at a price that he found to be really great. Hannah got to have another experience at the Build-a-bear Workshop. She had the time of her life building and dressing her newest addition...Anna the Frog. Anna is adorable and has a wardrobe that she will be sharing with her sister Evelyn the Bear. Who would have thought that there would be a Junior Girl Scout outfit available as bear wear? Who ever thought of this place (Build-a-bear Workshop) is rolling in the $$$ that's for sure! Every mother and daughter that came in left with a bear or different animal friend :)

Coming home was a little rough as our plane was 3 hours late leaving Boston. So instead of leaving at 6 pm we left at 9 pm. We got into Minneapolis and were booked into a hotel for the suit cases. So there we are, in a hotel room, no shampoo, no toothbrushes or combs, uh huh. Thank goodness the hotel does supply some amenities, ones in which we were able to get from the desk clerk, or we could have been one scary looking foursome at the airport, LOL!

I brought back a couple of thank you types gifts for my friend Kim (ssssh it's a secret) who graciously accepted my bribe of making her family a cheesecake in payment of watching all of our pets. Yes I still intend on making that cheesecake but I will also surprise her with some other goodies as well. And as you all know, it's always nice to let your friends know that you appreciate them.

Mount Washmore has once again reared it's ugly head and I have yet another mountain of laundry to get through and the worst part of it is that I've run out of detergent. So I have to wait until the commissary opens at 11am in order to start the process all over again, ugh!

I'll say it again...I'm glad to be back and sleeping in my own bed! And yes I am very thankful for the many blessings the Lord has bestowed upon my family.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

We're leaving in a hour

It's an hour until we leave and all I need to do is to put on my make up. Yes you got it, I got up a hour before the alarm (nothing new there). I'm excited about this trip. Our bags are packed, liquid things are in a quart sized zip lock baggie, books packed and I'm drinking my coffee.

We've decided not to bring the lap top because of Internet connection issues so it's highly unlikely that I will not be adding to my blog while we're gone. But then again you can never tell where I might find Internet access. I'll be keeping a trip journal and when I come back I'll be sure to update you all on where we've been and what we've done.

I hope that everyone has a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving! I'll be back home next Friday the 24th...stay tuned!

Friday, November 17, 2006

One Day to go...

Until we leave for Boston. Am I ready? Not even! I've still got a few more things to wash and then there's every ones clothes to sort and pack. I'll have everything together by this afternoon.

The plan is to do all of our Christmas Shopping for the family while in Boston. I'm going to save myself time and money by getting everything out there. No waiting in line at the UPS counter or at the Post Office for me this year! Can you tell that I'm excited about that? :)

Of course I have a lot to get done today, my friend Kim is going to pet sit for us, pick up mail and so I need to meet with her today. My friend Theresa is going to drop by with a couple of gowns for me to look at (she's got oodles of the things) for the 2 Christmas parties that I'm going to attend (they're formal too).

Then there's the Luncheon for my husband, he's leaving one job to go to a different one here on the base. Picking up my son's best friend and bringing him here to hang out and play video games for a few hours. And of course there's that Mom thing of making sure that the house stays tidy...ugh! it's time to drag out the vacuum and get on with that laundry (it's a never ending cycle of dirty clothes around here).

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Lets do Lunch

I love that phrase don't you? But I'm probably the only person I know that says it and means it. I get such great enjoyment from having friends over to dine be it lunch or dinner. Being able to sit around a table, to enjoy one another's company and to just have fun.

So with lunch in mind I've got to design a recipe page scrapbook style :) I've got a couple of ideas, but nothing really that grabs my attention at the moment. It'll come to me and when it does I'll be grabbing a pencil and getting my ideas down on paper.

Today is our OSC Spa Luncheon. I'll be bringing my camera of course (to take some pictures of this event). I'll be able to tell you all more after I get back from it.

Tomorrow is another luncheon, this one is being held in honor of my husband getting a different job here on the base and is leaving his old one (after 18 months). So, I suppose that cancelling my dental appointment for tomorrow is in order since it's at the same time as the luncheon.

I'm off to make some phone calls and to get dressed for lunch!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

the fine line between Love and Hate

Okay, so my "Word" program is making me bonkers right now, LOL! Computer journaling...if my own hand writing were better and more like calligraphers rather than my own chicken scratch I'd do it more often. But alas, beautiful hand writing was not one of those gifts bestowed upon me. Last night as my daughter Hannah was checking out my latest layouts (I was so proud that I had completed them, journaled and everything). She noticed some out of place words. I looked at what she was pointing to and the word "aaauuuggghhhh" came out. So this morning I've gone back and have fixed them in my word program and have printed out the boo boos and am ready to lift off the journaling areas and put in the new improved ones. There are days and then there are days, if you know what I mean. There are words like "so" instead of "do" "though" instead of "thought" and "that" instead of "the". Hannah's favorite (she found this on a different layout was the phrase "Needles to say", it just cracks her up to no end and she says it to me when ever she finds the occasion. The needles misspelling I am going to leave alone, I'll let it stay as a testimony that only 1 being in this world is perfect and needles to's not me, LOL!

a Note from The Scrapbook Nook

Scrapbooking is gaining more popularity every day. Even though many of my closest friends and family members do not scrapbook, they do enjoy looking at the ones I have made for them over the years. Don't let this holiday season get away from you. Bring out that camera, great shots are right around the corner! You might not scrapbook but I'm almost certain that someone in the family does...and they would dearly LOVE to get copies of those wonderful holiday pictures!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Things that make me laugh

I can't begin to tell you how hard I laughed when I put this layout together. I looked at the pictures that I had and suddenly it all came together. I knew what I was going to put in there for journaling. Yup it came right down to a She said/He said kind of thing. This really fits my children too!

It's Cold Today!

Okay it's not just cold, it's freaking cold! I'm ready to put on a jacket I'm so cold, did I mention that I have on 2 sweaters? And I'm in the house! I've had my little portable heater on (full blast) in my scrapbook nook all day long and usually it starts feeling rather warm and toasty in there after about 15 minutes but not today. That wind is howling something awful today. Old man winter is here and he is letting us know that he's going nowhere any time soon!

My husband came home for lunch and dang was he ever cold! He was chilled right down to his bones. He had the coldest hands ever! It wasn't until I had him a mug of hot cider that he was actually starting to warm up. Personally speaking, I think holding a hot mug had something more to do with it rather than him drinking the hot cider.

I checked the weather channel today and we're supposed to have wind gusts up to 40 mph, trust me when I say that they ARE here! And of course it's snowing side ways (the wet kind of snow usually comes sideways). The kids will be happy to see more snow, they were in the middle of building a snow fort when the weather started to warm up a bit. It's gray and dreary but here inside our little cottage on the prairie I've got the tea kettle on the stove, a fresh pot of tea is about to get brewed and I'm ready to have a little break from my scrap-fest.

My Canon CP-200 photo printer has been getting a little workout today. I can't tell you how much I have enjoyed this little printer of mine. On cold wintry days like this, I enjoy printing pictures from warmer days gone by. I'm working on finishing up a few of when I got my Honda minivan (pictures from last January), kids back to school photo's (those are also from 2005), there's our Hannah fishing here at the base (also 2005). I've got a Halloween 2006 layout done and I've got a 2005 layout in the works. I am just all over the calendar year today when it comes to layouts!

I just noticed the time...I need to get upstairs and make sure the door is unlocked for the kids. They should be home soon and I know that they are going to be COLD!

Sleep or the lack of it...

It's hard to imagine that I've been up since 4 am, why my body continues to do that to me is unknown...I'll just roll with it since there's nothing else I can do about it. I've tried going to be later and trust me it doesn't work. So last night I took a long hot relaxing soak in the tub, put on the Ole flannel pj's and watched some TV in bed. I was blissfully sleeping by 9pm. So I guess that 7 hours of sound undisturbed sleep is good isn't it? I think that our daughter Hannah has my sleep genes, she goes to bed around the same time I do and gets up early just about every day. This past weekend she was up before I was...and on the computer no less :) That part made me laugh!

My husband and son can sleep like no one knows! I am amazed at how long they are able to stay asleep. Last Friday (no school or work on that day) they both slept well past noon. The only way I could ever do that is if I were sick, and even then that's rather iffy.

Oh well, at lest I have the laptop upstairs and I can read the news on line, check on the weather (see my latest link to the weather channel), and visit with friends at various sites on the web.

My Girl Scout Troop

Girls are funny little creatures. Take my Girl Scout troop for instance. Yesterday as we held our meeting we covered the topic of the importance of having a clean kitchen. I talked about the TV show that Hannah and I watched. Then I showed the girls what to use for a safe alternative to clean counter tops with versus using a powdered abrasive cleaner. How the bleach, diluted with water will kill the germs and is residue free. Two of my girls were in total amazement, I could see it in their facial expressions. One wanted me to write it all down so she could show her Dad.

We talked about recycling...the whole reduce, reuse, recycle story. My troop is small and to my amazement I found out that 50% do not so any type of recycling in their homes. I showed the girls some glass jars, ones that once held a Yankee Candle, spaghetti sauce and sun dried tomatoes. I let them know that the energy from recycling just one of them could power the family television for 3 hours. Needless to say, I was able to grab their attention with that! I went on about how my family recycles and I showed them my big bins for recycling which in fact aren't even bins...I have a large Rubber-Maid Clothes Hamper (we used to use it for clothes until I switched us over to pop up hampers a few years ago)and a large Rubber-Maid Trash Container (we used to keep our garden hoses curled up in it for the winter). I use one container just for paper product recycling. I must have at least 2 to 3 bags of that going out each week. The other container is for plastic, glass, aluminium and steel cans. The girls asked me how much garbage do we produce in a week, I let them know that we put out 1 bag of garbage each week. I can tell from the look on their faces that they were amazed. One little girl went on about how much trash their family produces and how they are going to need to have 2 trash cans very soon. I asked if they recycle and she said "no, my Mom doesn't have time for that". I have to say that I was a bit taken back with her answer. But then again if you don't grow up with this sort of thing, it's hard to get involved in doing it. Another girl admitted that they did not recycle at her house but she did want to know about it and how to get started. She was eager to tell her Dad how much "stuff" my family recycles each week, she couldn't get over how we put out 1 bag of trash each week. I don't think that any household here on this street could go for a month without trash pick up with the exception of ourselves. Now having us go without recycle pick up is another story...

When we moved into our house in Virginia, we were the only family on our cul-de-sac that recycled. Within a month, our good friends and neighbors across the street started recycling too, it was great! Then within a year I'd say, I had every house in the cul-de-sac and down the street recycling. I felt good about being a positive role model in that respect. It was the same way when we moved here. We live on the corner, sometimes I refer to our house as being fish bowl (where everyone can see our goings on). Right from the start I recycled. Actually I was very excited about the curb side pick up every week :) And from the very beginning we would put out the recyclables. One day when I was outside during recycle pick up, the gentleman that does the recycling pick up told me that I have set the pace for the rest of the neighborhood. That before we moved here that no-one on this street did recycling. I was really shocked with that bit of information. He said that sometimes people just need someone to set the pace and then before you know it, everyone is doing it!

I hope to be a positive role model for my girl scout troop in that same respect. We will be doing trash pick-up for Earth Day, and I plan to take them to a recycling center and even teach them a bit about composting.

Monday, November 13, 2006

My month long Scrapbooking Project

Have you ever thought about assigning yourself a scrapbooking project? Starting on December 1st though the 31st I'm going to assign myself a task. I will take at least one picture a day and journal about it. This will be a day in my life for a month and it will all go in my own book of Me. I got this idea from Simple Scrapbooks on line newsletter. Once I read the article, I knew that this was the project for me! Now for me to choose my background color and embellishments, I want to stay in a color theme throughout the entire month for this project. December would be the perfect month for me to do this too! I have a lot going on, not just Christmas, but Girl Scouts, the OSC Holiday luncheon, 2 Christmas parties (that is as of now, could be more), Hannah's pre-op appointment and surgery, My Dad's birthday, my parents anniversary, my brother-in-law Henry turns 29 this year, then of course there's New Years Eve. Yup, I'd say there re a lot of reasons for me to take pictures every single day in December! Won't you join me on this little challenge?

How Safe is your Kitchen?

It's Monday, the beginning of yet another busy week for yours truly. Can you believe it, we leave this coming Saturday (the 18th) for Boston. I was just there in July...but then again I didn't visit with any family either.

My daughter and I watched a show on HGTV called "Kitchen Crimes". We were both seriously grossed out! One million germs (and counting) on the kitchen counters...eeeew! Makes me wonder what their bathrooms were like. Seeing the dog stealing food from off of the kitchen counter about put me over the edge. It also made me think about our cat. What IS she doing while we're sleeping?

I have my spray bottle (it contains water and bleach) in hand and wipe down my kitchen counter tops every morning, heaven knows my cat was probably walking all over it while we were sleeping. What I use is not an expensive cleaner and it doesn't take very much bleach, about 2 or so good drops per cup. Spray it on and let it stand on the counter tops for 2 minutes then wipe it down. There you have it, germs that can make you and your family very ill are gone! Food poisoning is fast becoming more common that you think. I've suffered food poisoning a few times since being married. Most of it was at the hands of a beloved family member (no not my husband) and once from a fast food restaurant. It all has to do with how clean your food preparation area is, properly storing said food and the #1 and anyone else that helps you in the kitchen has washed their hands with soap and warm water.

Food storage is another thing you really need to pay close attention to. Don't let meat defrost on the counter tops, that's just inviting trouble. Put it on a plate on a lower shelf in your refrigerator. Why a lower shelf? In case some of the blood/meat juice drips off of the plate you don't want it to contaminate other food items in the refrigerator. After your meal, promptly store all leftovers in containers and either freeze or refrigerate them. If possible label with the date and what is inside of the container. Keep leftovers in your refrigerator for no more than 3 days. I like to freeze my leftovers. I use those handy plastic boxes from Glad, I label them (I prefer not to have a surprise as to what I'm defrosting for dinner) and there you have it!

Pay close attention to how cold your refrigerator temperature is, is it cold enough? What about those expiration dates on things such as eggs? They are there for a reason, salmonella can set in, so dispose of them if they are past the date. You wouldn't think of pouring yourself or your children a glass of milk from a carton of expired milk, so why would you you use expired eggs?

The Holidays are upon us now, and it's time to think about food safety. No one wants food poisoning for Thanksgiving...most of all me!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Saturday Afternoon

So there it was, Saturday afternoon. After getting through what seemed to be a mountain of laundry (or what I lovingly call Mount Washmore). I was thinking about making dinner. I really didn't want to go though the hassle of making another batch of pasta dough. I looked in the refrigerator and found that package of won-ton skins I had bought to make pot stickers. I had seen a cooking show earlier in the day that talked about using those for making raviolis. So what the heck, I decided to give it a try. They made a very delicate ravioli. So I'd say yes, by all means use those packaged won-ton skins...they work very well! Our son Andrew, being the always hungry growing boy that he is gobbled them right up!

The kids mad an attempt at building a snow fort in the fluffy dry snow. When they came in for the day, they were exhausted but happy. My DH of course had to go to work for a few hours, while I was a house potato. Yup, I stayed inside and piddled around doing this and that. I'd have to say that it was a fairly productive day for all of us.

Friday, November 10, 2006

If this was a School Day it would be a Snow Day

So here it is a few hours later...for me it feels more like 2 O'clock in the afternoon rather than the actual time 8:20 in the morning, eek! I've managed to rearrange the pantry, have a Ragout simmering on the stove and a batch of chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven. I've washed down the kitchen, dried and put away all of the hand washed items, and am ready for a spot of tea. So what have my husband and children been doing all that time while I've done all of that work? They've been in a blissful slumber in their beds. My husband is off from work, the kids have yet another day off from school. If this was a school day it would be a snow day, no doubt about it!

I hear the humming of the snow plows outside. One side of our street has been plowed, now for the other side to be done. The snow is still falling ever so softly, it looks like the light and fluffy kind of snow not at all the wet kind needed to successfully build a snowman, but it's snow that the kids can play in none the less.

I'm using my silicone baking mat for the first time. I have always used parchment paper for lining my baking sheets but I've decided to test drive one of those a silicone mats. Hey the price was it at Hobby Lobby with that 50% off all Wilton products Internet coupon a few weeks back. Depending upon how this goes, I just might break down and purchase a sil-pat brand mat for my larger baking pans. I've always heard good things about them and now I'm beginning to wonder why It took me so long to get one. Maybe it's the price, maybe? Heck of course it was! But I think that I'm now ready to do the switch. I'm tired of being a slave to parchment $4.95 to $5.95 a roll (depending upon where you can find it to buy) it's rather pricey! I will continue to use it for cakes and cheesecakes but I think that it's time to make the big jump. Hey maybe if I'm lucky I'll get some gift certificates from Williams-Sonoma for Christmas :) Now I've gone and switched over to silicone oven mitts and pot holders a few months ago. I especially love using them when I am draining large pots into the sink. No more worrying about the oven mit getting wet with hot pasta water and burning my hands!

Scrapbooking in Chronological Order

One of the main reason that I stopped using strap hinge style scrapbook albums is because of the way it forces you to scrap in chronological order the other was scrapbooking on 2 sides of one piece of paper, oh how that drove me bonkers, LOL! Any way, sure we like to have our scrapbooks arranged in that order but heck scrapping in order? To me, that just never made any sense at all. I'm all over the place when I scrapbook. One day I might be in the mood to do layouts based on our vacation to Hawaii, another day it could be about Christmas Ornaments or my daughter's birthday party. I'm all over the place when it comes to scrapbooking and I wouldn't change a thing about the way I scrap!

On the suggestion of a friend I tried having a separate Christmas album. One where you keep all of the Christmas layouts from years past. Well I would have only 1 or two layouts from Christmas and it made my family album seem off kilter or as most people would refer to as being off balance. So I put them back in. Now I could possibly see myself making a Christmas album, if we were vacationing somewhere over Christmas break and I had tons of layouts to go into said album. Other than that, I would just put those 2 or 4 pages into the album to round out the year.

Lets talk about the need for some of us to make a 2 page spread of everything, did you know that It's really not necessary to do that? Some scrappers think that it gives the book harmony to make these pages. The other thing is the 1 page spread..making one then making another page that faces opposite of it in the same or very similar colors because that is supposed to make the page flow. In case you're wondering, I did a lot of that when I used strap hinge albums but then I stopped. It was like one day I said to myself...why am I doing this? Then the next thing was...Why am I continuing to use these albums that make me feel so frustrated? A couple of my girlfriends back in Virginia tried to use the "Oh Sandie, all of your albums won't look the same on the shelf if you switch to using post bound top loading albums". Like somehow all that mattered was that the albums have some sort of uniform look to them while on the book shelf...that to me is just plain nuts! Since I switched over to using post bound albums back in 2001, I have had this sense of freedom in creating or should I say jumping around in creating layouts for my many albums.

I create from within from what I feel. If one page is muted tones of blues and greens, the next page could very well be bright pink and orange with a touch of yellow and lime green. No matter what pages goes next to what it's going to be beautiful. This is something that you are creating from your heart, for your families enjoyment, heck for that matter your own enjoyment!

The other day I worked on a layout of my daughter Hannah's birthday, by the way her birthday was back in July. Before that I did a layout on baby rabbits, those pictures were taken in June, then there's the layout with roses and that was from February. The pictures are going to be there waiting for you no matter what. When I first started scrapbooking back in 1999 I was very behind. I had been married 9 years, had 2 babies and have been through several moves across the USA. By June 2000 I had actually been caught up, I had quite a few albums done. Now by October 2000 I was living in yet another new state and was very much behind behind on all of the pictures we took over the summer months (and I only get more behind from there). What I am trying to say is, don't be in such a hurry to get caught up. Sometimes it's better to wait on scrapping some events. I've done that with our Hawaiian vacation pictures, I couldn't find the right papers or embellishments that I wanted to work with so I held off on scrapping some of those photos. But whatever your reasons are on waiting to scrap certain events do make sure to take notes and keep them with your pictures! That way you can come back to them and have the information you need for your journaling.

Whatever you do, enjoy the ride. Scrapbooking should be a fun and enjoyable hobby. Once it begins to feel like a chore it's time to put it away for while. Don't worry your pictures will still be there waiting for you once you're ready to work on them again.

Winter Wonderland

Looking out the window this morning I am delighted to see a nice white blanket of snow coating everything. It looks so calm and peaceful, the snow glistening with the moonlight. Maybe the snow will stay with us long enough for me to get some pictures outside with the kids. Looks like it's time to pull out the sled and maybe even build a snowman or even have a snowball fight.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Pasta Milano -- Recipes from, the Web site of WCPO-TV in Cincinnati, Ohio

I found this little gem of a recipe and HAD to share it with you all, Enjoy!
Ps- I'd stick with making the sauce from scratch versus buying a jar sauce, the flavor is sooooo much better when you make it from scratch!

Pasta Milano -- Recipes from, the Web site of WCPO-TV in Cincinnati, Ohio: "Macaroni Grill's Pasta Milano
Recipe by: Macaroni Grill
Web produced by: Mark Sickmiller
7/24/2006 12:53:08 PM
Butter, 1 tbl.
Mushrooms, Sliced, 1/2 cup
Sliced grilled chicken, 3 wt oz
Sun Dried Tomatoes, 1 oz
Roasted Garlic Alfredo Sauce, 3/4 cup
Grated Parmesan Cheese, 2 tbsp
Bow Tie Pasta, cooked, 8 wt oz (dry weight)
Italian Parsley Sprig, 1 sprig
In a sauté pan, melt the butter and sauté the mushrooms until tender, about 30 seconds.
Add the sliced chicken and sun-dried tomatoes and sauté with mushrooms until heated.
Add the roasted garlic Alfredo sauce and 1 tbls of the Parmesan. Heat and stir well until the cheese has melted.
Place the bowtie pasta in the pan with the Alfredo mixture and mix well.
Place all on a plate and garnish with remaining Parmesan cheese and Italian parsley.
To save time, use the pre-cooked sliced chicken that can be found in the deli isle at your grocery store and a pre-made, jarred Alfredo sauce.
For better flavor, use freshly grated parmesan cheese. "

Cooking and Creating

By the way I'm feeling you would think that it was a beautiful sunny day...but alas, it's been snow flurries ever since 5:30 am. My husbands office Thanksgiving party went well. That cheesecake went fast today! There were many wonderful things...roast turkey and ham, the dreamiest garlic mashed potatoes ever, salads of every kind imaginable (and they all looked great). It was quite the spread that the group put on.

Now here I am back home and I'm in the mood to make spaghetti sauce...from scratch. I am so in the mood to chop onions, peel and shred carrots, chop up celery, yellow and zucchini squash. Yes it all goes into my spaghetti sauce, heck the sauce is a meal in it's self, LOL! Later on this afternoon I'm going to pull out that pasta machine and make some more homemade noodles and cheese raviolis. I'm also in the mood to make Alfredo Sauce from scratch.

While at the commissary I bought some stocking stuffers. I love this time of year, it's when the specialty imported foods are brought in (m'm m'm). The Stollen from Germany the Brussadella (Italian bread cake) from Italy are just a few of my favorites!

What Scrapbooking item are you?

What scrapbooking item are you?

You are a pair of SCISSORS!You're cutting edge, baby! You cut through life with ease, always keeping others on the edge. You have the power to simplify things by just cutting them out. But scissors beware - you may cut some of the important things out of your life without realizing it, in your need to keep trim!
Take this quiz!


Make A Quiz More Quizzes Grab Code

I had to laugh when I saw the results of my answers...try it and see how it makes you laugh!

Kicking it Out!

Kicking out what you wonder? As you know, I've been kicking out clutter on a pretty regular basis this past month or so. The yesterday I kicked out (made) a great cheesecake yesterday for my husbands' office lunch party (that's today). This morning (this for me is remarkable) I have managed to finish up the twenty that's "20" 8x8 scrapbook pages that I started yesterday afternoon...uh huh! Oh yeah! I've got to print out a few more pictures for the album and I'm done!

As if you couldn't tell, I'm feeling pretty good about my latest accomplishments in scrapbooking. As one scrapbooker to another we all go through ruts or non-creative periods. I wouldn't say that I was in a rut but more like a funk. I get that way when I can't find the papers or embellishments that I'm needing to finish off a particular layout. It's frustrating to say the least. But with this new Scrapbooking Store in town (Scrapping Ladies 2)...that is sooooooooo going to change! I popped in there yesterday with my daughter Hannah on the way to her orthodontic appointment. Hannah found some papers that she "needed" and I bought some chipboard book plates (Yes, I've become addicted to chipboard). I think that I need to get a job working in that store!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

I love Walgreens Photo Center!

Alright this is an all time record in photo processing for me. I uploaded my photos and placed my order with for 56 prints. Are you ready…I received e-mail notification in 7 minutes that my order was ready for pick up! WOW! Talk about speedy fast! I’m doing the happy dance! I know that there’s no way that I could ever print out 56 quality photos in 7 minutes on my little Cannon Photo Printer, at best it prints one quality photo per minute.

Finding Inspiration in everyday things

Now matter where I turn there is something to capture my attention, something to draw inspiration from... Be it the 7 foot Sunflowers that are drying in the sun in my neighbors flower bed or the Lavender plants in my own flower bed that have gone to seed. There are very few trees left with leaves and I suspect that they (the leaves) will soon be gone. For me, I draw a lot of my color inspiration from nature. I can remember the first time that I got into color, it was with the brilliant colors of Autumn when we were living in Maine. Nothing compares to the colors of the leaves on the trees in New England. It's something with the crisp Autumn air and the soil that brings such brilliant colors to those leaves. Summer time in Virginia was amazing! Flowers were everywhere! The dazzling variety of plant life that grows in abundance in someplace as humid as Yorktown Virgina. I had flowers in every color of the rainbow. For my blues, greens, shades of tan I think back upon my visits to the Ocean...the Pacific, the Atlantic, and the Caribbean. Tropical breezes, how the water felt lapping up around my ankles while walking in the water, seeing children happily playing in the water or building sandcastles on the beach.
Now how about seeing the colors of Christmas? The romantic hues of gold, silver and of course bright red cranberries and the deep forest green of an evergreen tree.

Today's inspiration is from my neighbors Sunflowers. They're so tall with the flower heads bending over from the weight of the seeds. The beautiful shades of dark gold, brown and a weathered green call to me...I love it! I've been watching the little birds come to the flowers and pick of the seeds.

My wish for you is to look out of your window and find something that inspires you!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Hannah's 11th Birthday ...layout

Here's my latest layout, journaling and all. I had these pictures printed up last week and I just went with the colors I was feeling. I love every aspect of this layout, it just has preteen girls written all over it! The colors and bright and vibrant like their individual personalities. From the doodlebug rub-on's the the Bazzill chipboard letter "f" to the Prima flowers and the making memories clear birthday frame. This was just plain FUN to make! I just know that my daughter will be thrilled when she sees this layout today:)


Our trip to Spain did provide us with some nice pictures, too bad that was about the only nice thing about the trip. It's a good thing that the camera doesn't capture smell because the town was smelling like rotting meat and garbage ...that doesn't paint a pretty picture. Then the fact that we were not able to find a place to eat lunch because every store and shop closed for siesta (that was rather funny). Then there was the nightmare of the 4 of us being dropped off on the highway by the bus driver because he missed our stop and was unwilling to correct his mistake and take us back there. Wearing our backpacks, the kids (who by the way were real troopers), my husband and I and were walking down the highway in Spain, nice! These pictures are from the little town Of Rota, which is right on the coast.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Rumor has it...

That there is a new Scrapbooking Store in town. I've herd from a few different sources that the Scrappin' Ladies from Sioux Falls have opened a store out in Rapid City. I must go and seek out this new place. Ive also gotten wind of a new Stamping Store having been opened out here. This is exactly what I would have hoped for! So sometime this next week I will go out in search of these stores. I'm so curious to see what they have, I sure hope that it's a wider variety of merchandise that what we already have out here. Because if it's much of the same I will be highly disappointed.

I learned yesterday that 3 families that we know have orders to move, 2 of them are going to Florida and the other Hawaii. Needless to say, I would be doing the happy dance if we had assignments like those! All 3 families are going off to wonderful assignments! I wish them all the joy and happiness a military assignment could bring. At least they will all be warm :)

After being broken for almost a week, the vertical blinds in the dining room are fixed. The maintenance guy did say that they are on their last leg though. We've been here for 3 years, and who knows how long thy were here before that. These places are like apartments, high occupant turn over. There are so many things that can and do go wrong with place like this for as many reasons as there are stars in the sky. But once someone moves in and has set their sights on truly fixing those problems and are not satisfied with just getting by with a patch job...well that's when real improvements start to occur. There still are quite a few problems with this house BUT I've also managed to fix quite a few of them as well.

Things that have been replaced or repaired since moving here

NEW Air Conditioning Unit
NEW Water Heater
New Stove
NEW Refrigerator
NEW lighting fixture in dining room
NEW Ceiling Fan with light in BOTH of the kids bedrooms
New and totally replaced Deck this took some real work but it was replaced!
New Windows in master bedroom and daughters bedroom the old ones had to be replaced because of cracks.

Hole in the sub-flooring in living room fixed (I proved that I was not imagining a hole there once the carpet was peeled back)

Leaking windows fixed- water would pour in like a waterfall under the sill when it rained- it was pretty scary when that happened.

Replaced light fixture in the utility closet aka My Scrapbook Nook. Lets just say that the naked light bulb thing was not working for me, LOL!

The toilet that would flush on it's own- fixed!

Warped steps on front porch replaced/fixed.

and I have the water heater purged every 6 months to keep the marbles from forming because of the hard water mineral deposits.

I hope to leave this house in better condition than when the keys were given to us to live in it. I don't want the new tenants to have to worry about the stove blowing up on them of having a water heater that sounds like a metal can of marbles is being shaken next to their heads when they are trying to sleep.

Friday, November 03, 2006 you do it?

Even though I was raised a military brat and have lived in many parts of the world, I spent the majority of my growing up years in California. As you know we recycle out there. I remember when the ecology groups came on the scene in the 1970's and started teaching us about the earth and how we would run out of space if we didn't start to do something about the garbage situation. So for me, it was easy to get into the habit of recycling. I recycle just about everything that I can; be it glass, jars & bottles, plastic bottles, packaging from my bacon and what not and most of all those bags we get from the stores (those plastic bags are a #2 plastic and are recyclable), news paper, cardboard aluminum and steel cans too! As a family of 4 we put out 1 bag of garbage a week, scary huh? Now we put out between 3 or 4 bags of recycling material every week. My neighbors across the street are a family of 4, and each week they fill up 2 large sized garbage cans , I've seen them have as many as 3 filled to overflowing cans out on the curb. That right there is a crying a shame! But some people have got the wrong idea about it, there are those that think that recycling is messy and dirty not to mention it's too time consuming for them to be bothered to do it. All I have to say is, rinse your cans out and it won't be. The worse one yet is when they get an attitude about recycling, one like "you can't make me do it". I have one girlfriend who is not about to recycle for anything on this planet and she too is one that puts out 2 big garbage cans stuffed to capacity out on the curb each week.

Some areas of the country don't have the same attitudes about recycling. Take Abilene Texas for example. When we lived there I had to hunt for those recycling kiosks because there was not any curb side recycling program established there (and we lived there for 7 years). Those recycling kiosks were getting further and further away from my home too, but yet I managed to hunt them down! Once a week I would drag all of my recyclables out to the other side of town with my babies in tow no less. Now my children are 11 and 14 year old and recycling is second nature to them.

Won't you think about recycling?

Homemade Pasta

The Pasta Class that I had the other night was seriously awesome! Yes I would consider it well worth the price that I paid for it. So now the hunt was on for Semolina Flour. Now even though we have 2 Safeway grocery stores in town, nether one had any nor would they be getting any back in stock until at least Tuesday or Wednesday (and even that was iffy). So I thought about it today and it dawned on me that our local Health Food Store should carry that kind of product. So I called and guess what...they have it! I took Hannah with me and I went downtown and picked up 2 packages. I plan on making noodles and using that pasta machine that my Mother gave to me last year. Hannah is excited about getting to play with the pasta machine. The one that I have is the Marcato Atlas 150 (it's made in Italy). I remember watching my mother make homemade spaghetti noodles using that machine. One of the many fond memories from my childhood. Now to me, this is one seriously FUN kitchen toy! I have the ravioli attachment for my Kitchen-aid stand mixer, I found it on clearance over at Herberger's earlier this year and let me tell you it was CHEAP! The retail price on the Kitchen-Aid Ravioli maker is $125, now believe me when I say that there's no way did I would ever pay anything near that! I got mine for under $30, no joke! It was seriously marked down and yes it was brand new in the box, never been used and everything was there (even the warranty information card). I can hardly wait to use these toys today...and I'll have my camera in hand snapping pictures as I go along. OH now for me to see how many eggs I have on hand as each reipe take 4 or 5 eggs. The pasta recipes are simple...

Basic Pasta Recipe
2 cups all purpose flour
4 eggs

this recipe is used for noodles like Fettucini, Angel Hair, Linguine and Spaghetti

Beat eggs lightly with a fork. Place flour o kneading surface and make a well in the middle of it. blending gradually in with the flour by puling off all of well. Mix until thick paste is formed, then incorporate the remaining flour to form a rough ball of dough. Knead for 10 minutes (do not skip this part, it's the most important part). Wrap dough ball in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 20 minutes as the dough now need to rest and become firm.

Now the other
Basic Pasta recipe
1 cup Semolina Flour
2 cups all purpose flour
4 large eggs

1 1/2 teaspoon E.V.O.O. (extra virgin olive oil)
pinch of salt

same directions. This kind of pasta using the semolina flour for those stronger boodles such as Ravioli, Lasagna, Tortellini, Manicotti, and those large shells that you stuff with ricotta cheese. Just thinking about this is making me hungry for pasta!

Oh if the dough is crumbling, add 1 table spoon of ice water at a time while kneading until it is a smooth dough ball.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

25 most common design mistakes

Last night I taped one of those shows that tell you about common design mistakes. The one last night was called "The 25 most common design mistakes in the home". Oh my gosh this was wonderful! I took a laundry basket into my living room and started pulling things out of that room and putting them into the basket. Lets just say that my living room is horribly small and I just have way too much stuff crammed in there to let the room feel "comfortable". Oh my gosh 20 minutes later ( I had to dust as I did this) and WOW it's amazing! I'm doing the happy dance!
I have to make it through the winter and spring in this house. I can't do that when I feel like I'm living in a sardine can. I would say cracker box, but alas the cracker box is larger than the sardine can, LOL! hate to pack up my knick knacks but I have to if I am to maintain a level of sanity here. I hate it when I start the feel the walls coming down on top of me. I went though my scrapbook nook last night and put everything away and organized it. Talk about tidy! I need to get in there today and finish up the rest of those calender pages...they are adorable! Journaling is what I need to get done...I have to make the time to get it done!
But back to the show...I have to say that I found it to be very informative. I do feel that I have been making some of those mistakes, not all but some. So now I've made it my mission to correct those mistakes. Once I start doing that, I will feel better about our living space.

Oh Happy Day!

It's official, we have a surgery date! Hannah will be having her surgery on December 20th! We have been working towards this goal since February! I'm excited, Hannah's excited and now it's a count down until the surgery date! So what type of surgery is Otoplasty? It's surgery to correct her ear shape and to put the folds into her ears. I can hardly believ that it's really going to happen. I felt this huge wave of relief wash over me when I was in the doctor's office. And to think that I was at my wits end with the folks over at Tricare (our health insurance company). Please keep us in your prayers that all goes well with this surgery.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I survived Halloween! I was able to astonish my entire family by being able to pull off making my son's Halloween costume. Andrew finally broke down and told us that he really wanted to be a Jedi. But like true Andrew fashion he didn't tell us this until 4:15 pm Sunday. I went shopping for the "stuff" to make this costume early on Monday morning after taking the kids to school. Hannah had wanted to be a bag of jellybeans, but alas this was not going to happen. The jelly beans were to be balloons. We needed a lot of small balloons to be inflated and lets face it folks, I'm not one to blow up balloons, LOL! So out of necessity, our "plan b" was hatched. Hannah wore the "Laura Ingalls" costume that my mother had made oh so many years ago (back when I was a girl). The picture you see is of my children yesterday. Hannah braced the cold weather for a couple of picture snaps with mom :-)

So sewing for 2 days, getting a husband off for a TDy and going to a cooking class (this one was awesome) and getting 2 kids to various doctor appointments I'm beat! I need a vacation, somewhere tropical and warm would be optimal.

It was very cold on Halloween night. This is our 4th Halloween here and the weather was the clearest it's ever been. No snow, no wind, but just plain freaking cold! With the wind-chill it started off being 17 then went down to 12, brrrrr city! This has to the be the first time we've ever had bags of candy left over. Trick or Treating' time was from 5:30 to 7:30 pm here on the base and usually we are bombarded with nonstop kid action at the front door, but not this year.