Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Moms, Pamper Yourself!! A GIVEAWAY!

The Multiples and More Blog is celebrating their anniversary with a bunch of giveaways, and I am celebrating with them by doing my own giveaway.  Because what mom couldn't use a few things to pamper herself?  The winner will get A Year of Creativity - A Seasonal Guide to New Awareness, Sweet Apple Spice Mount of Olives tea, Quench body lotion by Oil of Olay, a warm vanilla scented candle, 2 peppermint wisps, homemade vanilla extract, 3 button magnets (to hang up cute picks of your kids on the fridge), homemade chocolate body scrub (this stuff smells so good you'll want to eat it - and technically you can as it's made from all natural ingredients), and homemade strawberry honey lip balm (with just a touch of shimmer).  I made the last 4 items myself.  :-)  I am also going to include one extra item, a surprise, for the winner.

To enter, you don't even need to be a blogger!  Just leave me a comment about what item you like the most, and make sure you leave a way for me to get in touch with you if you win! 
Extra entry for being a follower (leave comment).
Extra entry for blogging about giveaway and linking your blog to this giveaway (leave comment).
Extra entry for participating in Memory Lane Friday, this Friday (theme is to write about a time you got in trouble as a child).
Extra entry for tweeting about this giveaway with link (leave extra comment).

Winner will be chosen Monday, April 5th.  Good luck!

Multiples and More: Blogaversary Celebration

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Hot Cross Buns

This month's Family Fun magazine had a recipe for hot cross buns that we wanted to try.  I've never made them before.  Go here for the recipe.
Turns out that 3 year olds like to knead.

Yes, his hands were washed first.  That's blueberry stain from lunch.

They turned out beautifully.  Except for that I stink at squeezing iced crosses from a ziploc.  Is there a dummies book on how to do that?

Oh yum.  They taste good even with ugly icing.

Waiting for Daddy to get home, to tell him about learning to make dough and the adventures of the day.

Check back tomorrow.  I'll be doing a giveaway!  And you don't have to be a blogger to enter (plus, it's going to be a good one - all sorts of things for pampering youself :-))

Monday, March 29, 2010

Muffin Tin Monday - Blue and Purple. Plus, What the heck is a Chicken Tractor?

Today is Muffin Tin Monday.  The theme is blue and purple. Tricky, tricky!  We managed to create a tin though.
We had blackberries, a mini cupcake with blue frosting (disclaimer: not added to tray until he ate the other stuff!), plum, mashed cauliflower with blue tinting, roasted eggplant, and ham.
Want to participate in MTM?
Muffin Tin Monday at Her Cup Overfloweth

Okay, so what the heck is a chicken tractor?  Paul has been hard at work on ours.  It's a big home for the chickens, that you can move around the yard each day (so you don't have to clean out a coop).  I asked Paul why it was called a chicken tractor.  He said because it moves.  I wanted to know why it wasn't called a chicken train or chicken Mercedes but he didn't have an answer for that. 
Pre-chicken tractor, the chickens were in our living room.  Which was fun because we could give them treats throughout the day, like worms.
But eventually the chickens got big.  And smelly, and they started to run out of room in their box.  So once the chicken tractor got close to completion, we moved them outdoors.
See that wood overhang right over the door?  I promptly stood up into that and just about knocked myself out.  Paul sawed it off, thankfully.
Right now, the chicken tractor is covered with insulation because it's cold out. 
Also, our electricity went out for 4 hours in the middle of the night the other night, so the chickens didn't have their heat lamp.  And it was cold.  So we lost one of our layers :-(
Hopefully that won't happen again.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

That Sam I am, That Sam I am!

We've been deeply immersed in Dr. Seuss lately.  It's like a light went off with Pierce, and now he is deeply, passionately, in love with every book ever written by Dr. Seuss.  Good thing we have them all. 

I must say, I've never made eggs like this before today:
Cherry butter toast, sausage, and green eggs with mushrooms and cheese. 

Pierce really likes to count, so we introduced the concept of addition and subtraction today.

He's a little young for the idea.
But he had fun anyhow.

And finally, we found the coolest farm at Michael's in the dollar aisle.

I just know I've got some glow paint around somewhere so we can paint the barn to go with the glow-animals.
Hope you had a fun weekend, too!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

I am not a Snot Rocketeer (a race report)

I have a confession.  My training has suffered this winter.  Bogged down with kids and snow (and some extra weight), I haven't been running as much as usual.  I'm still running, just not the long runs I would normally be doing.  Over the past month I've made more of an effort to be consistent with my running, but I'm definitely not where I'd like to be (by the time Pierce was 7 or 8 months old, I ran a full marathon).  So my furthest run since before Christmas has been 7 miles

So here I've been kind of floundering around and I don't know what came over me, but Thursday I signed up for a 10 mile trail race.  I've never gone into a race without training for it.  I suspect Paul may have slipped some moonshine in my Diet Pepsi that day or something for me to act so out of character.  Plus, I'm not a trail runner.  I can't remember the last time I was even on trails (other than the little trail that runs on our land).  To tell you the truth, I wasn't even sure if I could run 10 miles.  But I set out to give it my best shot.

Standard race breakfast...a pb+j on whole wheat

It was cold this morning.  The race director, Josh, said 31*.  Brrrr!
Everyone huddled for the prerace briefing. 

Then we were off.

This field was really quite muddy.  Once we got around the field, the trail went into the woods and immediately through a bunch of mud and a stream crossing.  There was no way around feet were getting drenched!  It was maybe a foot deep.  I almost lost a shoe in the mud, as I hadn't tied them tight enough.  But it was all good.  Around a mile and a half, my left foot was numb from the icy water, but then it got better.  The course was very well marked (including stumps which had been spray painted orange so you wouldn't trip over them) and in general the trails were in good condition.

People spread out some and I had a guy drafting off me for several miles.  The cold weather and the remnants of the little cold virus I had a week ago had me sniffling the whole race.  This kind of messed up my breathing rhythm and my abs threatened side stitches as a result, but I managed to keep it tolerable by backing off a bit on pace.  Some people just blow snot rockets when they get runny noses during races, but I can't quite bring myself to do it.  Plus, I'm pretty sure I'd just end up blowing snot all over myself.  I'd rather sniffle.  Around mile 5 it was time to switch the music on my IPOD, so I stopped to let the drafter pass me and he complained about having to go around me!  Then he promptly wiped out, and said that he wished it had happened when I was in front so I wouldn't have seen.  He had a good sense of humor about it.
There were lots of rolling hills.  I felt pretty decent up to mile 7.  I took a ginger chew then had a mint chocolate Gu after that.  Couple of sips of Gatorade at the water stop.  My legs were feeling it (since they hadn't run further than 7 miles, this was to be expected) so I took more fuel than usual.  Normally, I wouldn't eat anything during a 10 mile run.  But between being undertrained and breastfeeding twins, I needed something in this race.

There were some uphills (gradual, nothing huge) that really did my legs in between miles 8-10.  There was just nothing left in them.  I could almost hear them grinding trying to find the strength to make it up the hills.  Trusty legs.  They pulled me through.  The finish line was back through the muddy field, up a hill, and over the grass.

Here are my shoes after the race.  Sopping wet and a nice coating of mud:

Cort, with his standard this is so lame expression. 

I ended up placing 1st in my age group, but only because there were only 2 of us.  Believe me, my time left a lot to be desired.  But I'm thrilled to have my first postpartum-twins race over and done with.

And more importantly, I had a fun time on my run through the woods. 
Kevin, Trina, and me (fellow Striders).  We all placed in our age groups.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Memory Lane Friday - A Room

This week's theme for Memory Lane Friday is 'A Room'.  I have so many rooms that stand out in my memory (particularly since my family moved a lot growing up) but I think my favorite is my bedroom from the age of 10 to 13.  We lived in an old 'four-square' style brick home and I just loved that house.  It was the greatest house for hide and seek.  My bedroom was on the second floor, and it had a small room attached to the bedroom.  I don't know what this room was meant to be initially, but it was filled with bookshelves, so I called it my 'office'.  It had multicolored stripes on the walls, that I always thought of as paint marks - as though someone had taken a paint brush and just stroked the wall all over.  The carpet was a burnt orange.  It came that way.  Here I am on the floor, doing homework.
Looking at all the junk on the floor, I have no clue about half of it.  I see the purple Jordache backpack, the $2 cash, the pencil sharpener, the yellow inflatable bunny ears (must've been close to Easter) but why is there a spray bottle?  Did I use that on my hair?  I have no idea.


Kid was always trying to snoop around in my desk!
He was trying to find my Ramona Quimby diary.  Grrr.  Good thing I wrote in code.
I do remember that the jug of water in the floor in this picture was for my pet frog, Gilly.

Want to participate in Memory Lane Friday?  It's easy!  Just grab the code below the button and paste it into your blog.

After you blog about 'A Room', come back and enter your website into Mister Linky, below.

Be sure to come back later to visit others' blogs and leave them some comments.
And don't forget to return next Friday to write about 'A Time You Got in Trouble'.  That should be a good one!  ;-)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

How to Deworm a Horse

Because you know you've always wanted to know.  Okay, technically, it's 'deworm' but no one says that.  Everyone says worm.  Cause we're horse people.  And we're lazy.  So here's what you do.  Horses need to be wormed every 6-8 weeks.  You need to rotate wormers.  This means you don't buy the same wormer each time because horses can build up a tolerance.  So you switch off.  Most horse owners like to switch off between Strongid and some other brand every few times.

So if you plan to take pictures while you worm, pick the horse that is calmest.  Otherwise you may end up breaking your camera.  My horse, Phoenix, has always been an idiot about worming.  So the pony, Harriet, was chosen to be my model.  Check out the wary, less-than-thrilled, look in her eye.

Horses don't generally like being wormed.  So you will want to prepare your supplies beforehand.  This basically just involves opening the box (don't let the horses see you doing this!).

Then take out the wormer.  You will worm your horse based on his/her weight.  Harriet weighs approximately 500 pounds.  So you just dial up to the weight on the dewormer.

Or in this case, dial down.
Now is when you've got to be sneaky.
If they see it, it's all over.
Once you've caught your victim  horse, then you can pull out the goods.
Now one trick I've learned with Phoenix, who hates all things that begin with the letter W, you can be a little sly by gently sliding your finger in the corner of the horse's mouth as though you were putting in a bit.
Then while the horse is mouthing your finger like, "What's this?" you can sneak the wormer in.
SQUEEZE!  And do it FAST!

Dude, they really hate this stuff.  Oh yeah, and did you wear old clothes?  Because you're likely to get yellow slime tar stuff all over as the horses try to spit it out.
Alright, all done.  Now you're good for another 6-8 weeks.
Next up:  vaccinations!

Don't forget to stop by tomorrow for Memory Lane Friday.  This week's theme is 'A Room'.  You can write about any room you remember well from your childhood.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

And the days roll on...

We've been busy, playing our days away.  Blocks.  Bubbles.

The first tattoo.
My little bad boy.

Speaking of bad boys, should I be concerned about this?

We made a cookie puzzle.
To celebrate spring.
Simple to do.  Just roll out sugar cookie dough and cut the pieces.  Chill in fridge 5 minutes, then bring out and remove the pieces.  Push almonds into them for handles.  Bake pieces 7-9 minutes and big cookie around 14 minutes (watch until edges brown).
As soon as they come out, recut the pieces with cookie cutters while still warm.  Then allow to cool and decorate as desired. 

The twins found Elmo.

And they've gotten good at feeding themselves.

Scooter found a sunny spot.
In grass that is turning green!

And Juliet and Horace spent some time in the sun themselves.

Have I mentioned lately how much I love spring?  :-)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Can I Get Seconds on the Pink Stuff?

Pierce went to his first pool party this weekend.  We hadn't been swimming since last summer. 
Pierce loved it but he was like a little monkey clinging to me.  It's probably a good time to start some swim lessons with him...but I have no idea how we would manage that unless I had someone to watch the twins.

Mattie seemed to really enjoy her cake.

Now see that little hand on the bottom on her high chair?  Yeah, that's Pierce's hand.  Pierce moving in for the icing.  Pierce sneaking his way toward that glorious whipped pink sugar.  Fortunately, he got his own piece and didn't have to steal Mattie's after all.
I could've eaten 50 pieces of Carebears cake.  No lie.  It was that good.  Plus, it's nice to get a little dose of pink now and then, surrounded as I am by all these boys!

I took like 50 pictures of Mattie but here's the thing. 
She's FAST.  This girl is always in motion.  ALWAYS.
Cute as a button.

Thanks to Elizabeth for inviting us.  We had a splendid time :-)  And Pierce keeps asking when we're going to see you and Mattie again.

Monday, March 22, 2010

MTM - What do Bears Eat, and Elvis gets his Bling

Well, it's Muffin Tin Monday again.  This time there was no theme.  So we came up with "What do bears eat?" as our theme.  My mom got us these adorable bear muffin tins which fit in just perfectly today.
Bears eat honey, even on heart shaped whole wheat bread.  Bears eat all berries, especially blueberries.  Bears eat citronella.  As we found out when we left some out on top of our mountain one summer.  Lest you think I fed my child citronella, I will let you in on a secret....really just lemon curd ;-)  But doesn't lemon curd look JUST like citronella that has turned semi-solid in the cold?  And bears eat salmon.  Only my little bear likes his salmon in a casserole with mac and cheese, tomatoes, and peas. 
This tin was a huge hit and everything was eaten.

Want to join in on MTM?
Muffin Tin Monday at Her Cup Overfloweth

So last week, Wendiwinn suggested that Elvis needed a gold chain.  And maybe a VW to drive around in.  So Pierce and I went to work with some beads.

Pierce was really happy with his 'transportation' necklace.  He wears it

And apparently, Elvis was happy with his bling, and his Hummer.  No lie, check out the chick's topper.  Does he have attitude or what?  Now he just needs a theme song.

Paul has suggested Elvis get a name change.  He says he looks just like Beaker from the Muppets.  Paul does have a point.
So let's take a vote.  If you all think his name should be changed, let me know, I'm game.  And if you think it should stay Elvis, too bad for Paul ;-)