I’ll see y’all in a few weeks! lol.
Y’all. Whole Foods makes this insanely addictive cake called a Chantilly Lace cake. It’s RaptorDad’s favorite. 🙂 Considering that every time we venture into a Whole Foods I manage to blow the grocery budget on gourmet olives and baked goods, I decided that I needed to learn how to bake this cake myself so I could limit our exposure to temptation. lol. After much searching, I found a copy cat recipe that looked pretty amazing and assembled all of the fancy ingredients. Except for, you know, sugar. lol. So back to the store we went. Y’all. It did not disappoint.
It’s probably a good thing that this recipe is insanely complicated because if it was easy, I’m afraid I’d be making it once a week and we’d all gain 1000 pounds. lol.
Kate was working on her edible model of the Alamo (why???) that was due today, but she took a break to make a fondant flower for the cake.
Y’all. My brain is mush, but I PROMISED you a blog post so here it is.
We have been knee deep in cookies for the past week and a half, but the end is in sight! Kate had an insane goal of selling 650 boxes of cookies, but she has worked her little tushie off and we are almost there. As of today, she only has to sell 45 more boxes! ::I think I can, I think I can, I think I can::
I’ll be back next week with some quilty, scrappy, yummy, updates. 🙂
At the beginning of the summer, I bought something called a Pogo Pass. Basically, you buy the pass and then you get 1 or 2 admission tickets to a bunch of different places over the course of the next year. (If you’re interested, I think I have an affiliate link that I can email to you that lets you get the pass for $39.98) Has it been worth it? Hmm… I actually just totaled up what we’ve used so far and I’d say it will PROBABLY end up being worth it. For sure, it encouraged us to get out and try new places we wouldn’t have gone to otherwise so in that sense it was absolutely worth it. And I imagine we will hit up 1 or 2 more places before our passes expire which will make it worth the sticker price. That said, we didn’t take advantage of a lot of the places on the pass either because they are in Waco (I’m not driving 2 hours to take my kid roller skating) or the just weren’t things I could do with the babies (looking at you Hawaiian Falls.) But, if you had only older kids I think it would definitely be worth it.
Which brings us to today! I was looking through the Pogo Pass trying to decide on something fun to do over Winter Break, and saw Wonder World. Um, yes please! I am addicted to cheesy roadside attractions and I have wanted to go to this place ever since I went back to school at Texas State to get my teaching certification. Was it fun? Yes. Was it insane with 2 preschoolers? Yes! Am I disproportionately disappointed that they didn’t sell souvenir patches? Yes. lol.
Luckily Kate’s BFF’s mom is super duper awesome and she always agrees to come along on my crazy adventures. The Pogo Pass got us into 3 of the 4 attractions and I decided that was enough for my crew, we just missed out on the Wildlife Train ride. My friend found a Groupon that included all 4 attractions, so we did the Cave, Observation Tower and Anti-Gravity House, then had a little picnic and left before they got on the train.
The Cave was fun, but to say that it wasn’t very accessible would be like saying the Sahara is a little bit dry. I wish I had brought my wrap so I could have worn Mia, but I ended up just carrying her for large chunks of the tour while abandoning my friend to deal with Xander. Did I mention she’s awesome? lol. Still, I think this is a good starter cave for kids because they can actually touch all of the walls which makes it less stressful. That said, there were some tight spots so I wouldn’t recommend it for someone who was claustrophobic.
Kate loved the observation deck and even with my deep fear of heights I can agree that the view was lovely. But the Anti-Gravity House? Oh lord. You could not pay me enough to reenter that place. It’s designed to be disorienting, and it straight up made me fall over. Luckily, I was near a helpfully placed bench, but yikes. I’m still dizzy just thinking about it. Kate, on the other hand, would have happily spent 3 hours in there. Even I’ll admit that they had some pretty cool optical illusions with balls and water appearing to roll uphill.
Bottom line, am I glad we went? Yes! We had a blast and it wore the babies out enough that they are both currently napping in their cribs which is my major litmus test for if an activity was worth it. Would we go again? Um, probably not. It’s kind of a one time is enough sort of experience.
As for the Pogo Pass? I have enjoyed having “free” activities to do with the kids, but I don’t think we will be buying one again this summer. Maybe when the babies are old enough to really take advantage of more of the activities it will make more sense, but for now I think we’re better off looking for the occasional Groupon.
Remember when I said I was going to try to post once a week? Apparently I have a lot to say. lol. I really should space them out, but I wanted to put out my January plan to hold myself accountable. Here goes.
- New bake. In the spirit of it being January, I’m going to attempt something healthy. I have my eye on this recipe for quinoa breakfast bites. I’m a little bit skeptical of weather or not my kids will eat quinoa for breakfast, but it would be awesome if we could break them of their z bar habit.
- New dinner recipe. This is a combo goal! I’m going to attempt to make chicken tikka masala for our Epiphany dinner. I found a recipe using my best friend, the crockpot. Now I just need to find some garam masala. I might just order it off of amazon, but I also figure my kids would get a kick out of a field trip to a specialty grocery store. We’ll just have to see how much time we have this week.
- Montessori trays. Y’all! I actually had these ready to go on the 31st! And they have been a huge hit. Mia especially loves them. I can’t wait to get started on revamping my H is for Heart valentines stuff for February. 🙂
- Feast Days. As I mentioned already, we’re celebrating Epiphany this month on January 6th. We’ll have Chicken Tikka Masala for dinner since the 3 wise men came from the east. I’m planning to write up a whole blog post after the fact about how we’re celebrating. Since Epiphany falls on a Sunday, I’m going to try to come up with some more fun crafts and stuff since we’ll be home and not busy at school. 🙂
- Hexies. We’ll see where we are at the end of the month. I’m so far behind I’m not sure it’s worth trying to catch up. lol. I might need to come up with a new plan.
- Scrapping. I’d love to get November 2017 and January 2018 done. We’ll see.
- Project Life. Hmm… Maybe I’ll try to do June 2018 and December 2018? I’d love to get caught up, but I also really love doing current stuff. I’m going to play around this month and then solidify my goal for February.
- Portraits. No ideas yet. But I’m sure we’ll come up with something.
- Sewing Project. I’m actually really excited about this one. My Quilt Guild makes donation quilts for various charities and sometimes they issue challenges to encourage people to participate. This time they gave out novelty prints and one of them was keroppi! I’m obsessed with keroppi so I had to participate. 🙂 The idea is to add fabric from your stash to make a quilt or quilt top. Since I don’t really have a stash (yet!) I ordered some fabric. lol.
As you can see, it’s a charm pack of low volume fabrics in a whole rainbow of colors! My plan is to fussy cut keroppi hexagons and then applique them onto the charm squares. Then I’ll machine sew the squares together to make a quilt. I might need to add a border depending on how big it ends up. We’ll see. This is due at the February meeting so I’m hoping to finish it in January.
- New Park. I’m leaning towards a nature park rather than a playscape park, but we’ll just have to see.
- Blogging. My goal was to have 4 blog posts by the end of the month, but I think I’m going to change that to having a blog post scheduled for each Monday in January.
- Get Healthy. January goal is 2 work outs a week, 10K steps a day, and track all food in My Fitness Pal. Lofty goals indeed, but I gained almost 10 pounds in December! Yikes! Time to get back on track.
Should we check in on my Mini December Goals?
- Write Thank You Notes. Done!
- December Daily. Done! I’ll try to take some pics of it and blog them later this week, but the reader’s digest version is that I switched to a 4×4 format and it’s freaking awesome.
- Take and edit family pics. Done! And I think they turned out really nicely if I do say so myself.
- Edit/ Print/ Scrap November. hahahahahaha. Not even close. But this one was always a stretch.
- Organize new toys. Still a work in progress. Especially since I dumbed out a bunch of their toys to reclaim my Montessori bins. lol. But it’s better.
Merry Christmas y’all!
I love matching Christmas jammies!
Our Christmas was perfect. 🙂 Lots of family, friends, good food, and good company. Now it’s time to start thinking about the new year, but before I set 2019 goals, I thought I would set 5 goals to accomplish in the next 5 days. Have I mentioned that I love setting goals? lol.
- Write thank you notes.
- Finish 2018 December Daily. I must have been very good this year because Santa brought me a new photo printer! <3 <3 <3
- Take and edit family pics. MY sister’s friend asked me to take some family pics for her extended family. Yikes! Fingers crossed. lol.
- Edit/ Print/ Scrap November 2017. Yes, I am that far behind. lol.
- Organize new toys.
Will I get all of this done? hahahahahahahaha. No, but I will get some of it done!
I made this advent calendar years ago and I fill it with an activity to do each day in the days leading up to Christmas. Historically, I have just put blank pieces of paper in the calendar and then frantically tried to come up with something each day with whatever supplies I had on hand. This year I want to do better! So I’m trying to map out the month now to make sure I have all of the supplies I need. Last year I was also inspired by this blog and I tried to add in some more Catholic stuff to the advent calendar. With advance planning I’m hoping to do even better this year!
Here’s my list of Advent Activities so far. They’re pretty much all from the aforementioned blog. 🙂
- 1st Sunday of Advent. Light the first advent calendar at dinner!
- St Nicholas Day Eve. Ok, I just made that up, but this is the day that the kids will put their shoes out for St Nicholas Day. lol.
- St Nicholas Day. The kids will get a little (to be determined) treat in the shoes and we will probably watch a little show about St Nicholas.
- Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. I think we will have some white cookies.
- Feast Day of St Juan Diego. Hot chocolate!
- Feast Day of Our Lady of Loreto. Gingerbread Houses.
- Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Maybe Pan de Dulce?
- St Lucia Day. We’ll make St Lucia buns!
- Christmas Eve Mass!
As you can see, there are still loads of empty days. Some of those will be dates that we have something planned (Kate’s Christmas party, a trip to see family, etc.) and then some of them will be what I call filler days which can be done on any day. I’m thinking this year, we these will include decorating Christmas Cookies, making an ornament, taking a walk to see the Christmas lights, basically I need to give it some thought. But I wanted to share these date specific ones ahead of time. 🙂
My goal with advent this year is to have loads of fun while still encouraging the kids (especially Kate) to learn a bit more about our faith. 🙂
If you’re joining me for the first time, allow me to clear up any misconceptions. I’m insane. lol.
I’ve decided to hand sew an entire king size quilt out of tiny 7/8 inch hexagons. Why 7/8 you ask? Because I cut out my own templates and I didn’t really know that most hexagons were standardized at 1 inch. Also, making them 7/8 of an inch allows me to get 4 hexagons from each charm square. When means, you’ve got it, there will be exactly 4 of each hexagon in the finished quilt.
In an effort to finish this quilt before I’m 95, I set a goal to finish what I’m calling one block each month. A block is 75 hexagons sewn together. Then I go ahead and baste another 225 hexagons each month (the extra 3 from each charm square.) I figure I’m going to need 64 blocks.
In October, I finished block number 8 (that I should have finished in September) which means that I am officially halfway through basting hexies! I am also really sick of basting hexies. lol. So I decided that instead of moving on to block number 9, I would skip ahead and makes some blocks with some of the already basted hexies. No surprise, but it turns out that it is much much much quicker to put together these blocks. lol.
My new plan is to switch off every other month with basting and not. So for November, I’ll do block number 9 and then baste the additional 225 hexagons. In December, I’ll do blocks 20, 21, and 22 which will be made using already basted hexagons. If everything goes to plan, I’ll continue this until January of 2020 at which point I will finish the 16th block. Then just 8 more months of stitching already basted blocks and the blocks will be done!
Of course, then I will still need to make some more hexies to join all of the blocks, but I figure I’ll worry about that when we get there. lol.
And then, because I’m truly certifiable, I’m planning to hand quilt the whole thing. eeep!
October has been a doozy y’all. We were supposed to go on an epic road trip with one of my good friends this month over Fall Break. To say that I was excited would be a massive understatement. The plan was to drive about an hour north of Lubbock on the first day to get to our staging point. Then we were going to wake up and hit Palo Duro Canyon and Cadillac Ranch before heading on to Santa Fe for the night. Then spend the day at this crazy place called Meow Wolf before driving to another staging point. Wake up, spend the morning at White Sands, check out Roswell, and spend one more night on the road. Then home! 6 kids, 2 moms, a 12 passenger van, and a whole lot of caffeine. What could go wrong?
Turns out a lot can go wrong. lol.
It started out going well enough. We left at 9am as planned, and we only had to turn around once to get the little potty (forgetting that would have been an epic disaster!) The van had enough room that everyone had enough space to be happy and we had plenty of devices. lol. I’m not a huge fan of screen time as a general rule, but they are totally necessary for a long road trip.
We stopped in some tiny town for a picnic lunch and found this super cool wall! My friend Erin got this awesome pic of the kids. We even pulled over on the side of the road at one point and snagged a cotton ball for the kids to check out. Things were going a little too well…
We made it to Lubbock around 3:00 and drove around for a bit looking for a fun park. We finally found one and let the kids out to play and run around for an hour or so. Everyone was having a blast. We loaded the kids back up in the van and we were driving about 5 minutes away for dinner when all hell broke loose. Mia started puking. A lot. We pulled over to clean her up and my friend’s son got his hand shut in the back of the van because it was so dang windy. I honestly thought his finger was broken. Thankfully it was just bruised.
At this point we had to decide if we wanted to A. Drive on another hour to where we had non refundable hotel reservations. B. Get a hotel room in Lubbock and then reassess in the morning. C. Abandon ship and drive home. The thought of unpacking the entire van only to deal with a puking child all night before loading up a (likely) puke covered pac n play and driving home smelling that the whole way was too much for us so we just drove home. There were many many tears, but in the end it was the right decision.
We finally made it home around 2:30 AM and RaptorDad took over Mia care. Poor thing just couldn’t keep down anything. Monday morning I took her to the dr and they gave us a prescription for zofran, but told me that if she couldn’t keep down the zofran that we needed to think about taking her to the Children’s Hospital ER. Well, she rallied for a bit, but woke up from her nap and promptly emptied the contents of her stomach. 🙁
So off to the ER we went. They ended up doing a CT scan of her brain because of her history of enlarged ventricles (so glad! We were in the ER a month ago for vomiting and they decided not to which made me nervous.) and everything was normal. Such a huge relief. The CT technician gave her a binky. lol. Mia loved it. They also gave her IV fluids and IV zofran. Poor thing was so dehydrated that they had to bring in 2 separate “IV experts” before finally finding a usable vein in her foot.
I think the scariest part was when the ER attending told me not to wait so long next time before bringing her in. 🙁 She just went downhill so fast! I mean, from the time she started vomiting to the time we made it to the ER was less than 24 hours. And she went to the pediatrician in the mean time! Still, it was a good lesson for me in listening to my mommy instinct and not being so concerned that other people will think that I’m overreacting. Also, so so so so so so glad that my friend listened to her mommy instinct in getting us home when I thought we just couldn’t drive anymore. I can’t imagine if we had been on the road for 6-8 hours with Mia as sick as she was.