Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A Movie About Chocolate Cake.

Today is National Chocolate Cake Day.
Four years ago, my friend Shanda posted about National Chocolate Cake Day...
..she told us all to bake a chocolate cake and post about it.

Every year since, we've made a chocolate cake!

This year....we created a movie.
It's nominated for an Oscar by the way.

Our Chocolate Cake Recipe.
I found it in the "Made From Scratch" Gooseberry Patch cook book 10 years ago.
It's my absolute favorite. It's very simple and easy to make.

If you're not wanting a cake...you can use the same recipe for cupcakes as well.

Preheat oven 350 degrees.

1 c. softened butter
1 3/4 c. sugar
1 T. vanilla extract
3 eggs
1 c. cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 3/4 c. milk {I use buttermilk....it's SO much better in cake!}

Cream butter, sugar and vanilla together until light and fluffy.
Add eggs; beat well. Add rest of ingredients. {flour last of course}
Divide evenly into 3 {we only use 2} 9" round cake pans.
Bake for 25 minutes.
Cool 10 minutes in pan. When completely cool, frost with fudge frosting.

Fudge Frosting
1 c. softened butter
4 c. powdered sugar
1/2 c. baking cocoa
2 tsp. vanilla
4-5 T milk

Combine all of the above ingredients together in a large mixing bowl;
beat with electric mixer until smooth.

Happy Chocolate Cake Day.

Monday, January 26, 2015

You know what today is?

This weekend I ate way too many doughnuts,
Had my face done by a fabulous make-up artist {Thanks Sunny!}
Wore a pair of Louboutins for a photo shoot...I felt like Sarah Jessica Parker for about an hour. ;)

We also went for a walk. Ate pasta and had a bible study at my parent's house Sunday afternoon.
Today is National Spouse Day.
A day to recognize your spouse..show your appreciation to the most important person in your life.

This is an oldie ^^^ (when cheesy frames were the creative thing to do ;)
We were sitting on the steps near Buckingham Fountain in the city.
If I could go back to one night with him...it would probably be this one.


Monday, January 19, 2015

He outsmarted me. My house will be cleaner because of it.

This little guy turned 3 months last week. 3 months!!!
How did that happen? WHEN did that happen?

He's at the age where everyone and everything makes him giggle and smile.

The weather over the weekend was lovely. Upper 30's/lower 40's.
See, this is what happens to your brain when you live in the north....
....you think 40 degrees feels like summer!

Since we homeschool, our schedule is a bit different than that of the public schools.
We take our spring break late....when the weather is sunnier and warmer.

On Columbus Day...we learn about Columbus.
On Martin Luther King Jr. we learn about Martin Luther King Jr.
On President's Day...we learn about Washington and Lincoln.

My kids thought this year we should take off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day today.
I told them if Sam could answer all the questions I asked,  they could have the day off.

Ha! I had them now. No way would Sam remember all the facts I taught him last year.
Well, let's just say I was VERY surprised and...my kids have the day off of school.

Which is great because I'm not in a school mood today either.
I am in a de-cluttering and cleaning mood.
We are washing floors.washing cabinets.scubbing bathrooms.cleaning closets.

It was a win/win situation.  Yes...my kids are happy to be cleaning today.
They started at 8:30 this morning. I'm hoping to be done by lunch time.

So, if anyone wants to do a pop over and surprise us...
...my house will be clean. ;)

Happy Monday everyone.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Where We Share Tunes.

A few songs for your Tuesday.

This one is happy.simple.and makes being broke not sound so bad.

This one is strictly for the video!!! It's so fun.
Turn off the sound if you don't like the song. {I'm not a fan}But watch it!
The choreography and the umbrellas...Oh the Umbrellas!!! Where does one find SO many?

This one I just love. She's also one of my favorite singers.
And one more from her just because she's great.

This one ..well, I just like the song, that's all.

This one  is an arrangement I like, of an old hymn I like.

This one....Oh My Goodness!!! It gets me all teary eyed. It's just the sweetest.
If you're pregnant or a mom!...you'll love it.

Happy Tuesday!!!

Monday, January 12, 2015

It wasn't in the weekend plans.

We woke up to sunshine Saturday morning. We talked about the day ahead.
Jeff went down to start coffee and breakfast. He's incredible at making breakfast.
{His waffles blow mine out of the water}

I was still upstairs...changing the baby when I heard
Tyler tell Jeff he has the most horrible stomach ache ever.
He said it was so bad, he woke up at 5 am...he tried to sleep but it kept getting worse.

Tyler then went back to bed.

He's not one to complain about pain, so I was a little worried.
I went to his room and checked on him.
Pain on his right side. No appetite. {that's a big read flag for a 17 year old boy!}

We wondered. We asked family. We Googled.
Our suspicions were confirmed when we took him into the ER.

Eleven hours after we woke up, our son was in surgery having his appendix removed.
Isn't it funny? Never in a million years would we have guessed our day would end up that way.

But God knew...
The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps. {Proverbs 16:9} 

Throughout the day my sister Caitlin "car-sat" Frankie so I could be with Tyler.
She was a lifesaver!!! I love her so much.
I would run out and nurse the baby, then run back in again.
He wasn't allowed in the hospital and I didn't want to bring him into germ heaven anyway!
Due to the huge amount of people with the flu...no one under 18 was allowed to visit.

Saturday night, Jeff slept at the hospital with him. I couldn't stay because of the baby.
Let me tell you...it was very hard to drive away from the hospital leaving my husband and son.
I'm always the one to stay with the kids....take care of them when something is wrong.

Jeff is great...and Tyler probably had a better time with his dad than me, {think sport's channel} but...
....as a mom, you want to be there. ;)

Tyler was able to come home the next afternoon.
The picture at the top is actually a picture he posted on instagram.
He was {happily} saying goodbye to his hospital bed.

He's now recovering for the next two weeks.
It's going to be hard to keep him down.

We are so blessed to live in a country where medical treatment is available...
...if something is wrong, it can be taken care of right away.

I've been doing a lot of unjustifiable complaining lately.
God has been showing me in so many situations all that I am blessed with.

Too bad I usually realize it AFTER it's all over! After the whining. After the bad attitude.
I'm getting really good at feeling bad and having to apologize.
Not a good thing to be good at!!! Ha!

Hope your week is off to a great start.
Happy Monday.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Just an average winter Thursday in January.

{I know it's his little mitt that's in focus and not his face, but I still like this photo}

If I take his mitts off, he looks like he got into fight with an alley cat and lost!
He's still such a little face scratch-er!

It was cold today.
40 mph wind gusts, 20 below with the windchill.

Where were my kids?
Outside working on their snow fort all afternoon.

I figure if Nordic babies nap outside in sub zero temps, my kids can play.
{Although I won't lie...I was a little hesitant to let my son go snowboarding today..
but he's fine and had a great time...just a little mom anxiety. Ha!}

Cold doesn't intimidate our family. {okay..MOST of our family, cough}
They get bundled up like Randy!  and carry on with their activities.
Why they love the cold so much I don't know....
....If we moved to Iceland my kids would have no problem adapting.

I love this...she's multitasking.

In the words of my mother...."Poor Chicken, ouch!"

After having a baby, being in the kitchen was Not top priority.
Now that we're all adjusted and back in the swing of things, I've been spending more time baking.
Back to homemade bread and better dinners!

This little guy loves his baths so much.
There is not much cuter in this world than babies taking baths, right?

Winter time we play a lot of games.
Here's a couple of our favorites if you're interested.

Sleeping Queens

Spot It

Have a great evening.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

It only took 39 hours.

I started writing this post yesterday morning at 6:36 am. Just a little over 39 hours ago.
{hence the morning sunshine and coffee cup}

Since then I've...
....taught two days worth of school
...changed 56 diapers
..nursed the baby 701 times
....Cooked 3 meals
...cleaned the kitchen 164 times
....did 5 loads of laundry
...made Jeff's lunch
.....kissed him hello, goodbye and hello again!
...showered twice
...had a good night's sleep
..visited with my parents who brought breakfast to us!
.....ate birthday cake
...AND turned a whole year older!!!  All in a day. ;)
Finally I am able to hit publish.

{Cake baked by my thoughtful children}

I'll be ending this evening watching a movie with my incredibly handsome husband
who I could stare at all day. Especially when he's holding my baby!

Also, I'm SO excited about a project I've been working on with Lake and Country Magazine. 
Can't wait to share more about it with you guys later. :)

It's absolutely freezing outside! It's a high of -7 tomorrow. -7!!!!!
That's withOUT the windchill. Bundle up and stay warm friends.

Friday, January 2, 2015

I'm Ready.

The tree we couldn't wait to cut down Thanksgiving weekend is outside, naked in the burn pile...
...I ate the last hazelnut cookie this morning. Christmas is officially over.

I like this time of year almost as much as I like getting ready for the holiday season.
Almost. ;)

There's an order we seem to lose during December.
The holidays are good.fun.exciting. But normal is nice too.
Sort of like sleeping in your own bed after vacation. There's nothing quite as comfortable.

So next week we're back in our own beds.
Back to school.  Back to regular routines. Back to regular bedtimes. (Hallelujah! ;)
I'm ready.

Thought I'd finish this week up with a few pictures from our past couple weeks.
I have so much to be grateful for.


Happy Weekend.