Category Archives: Everyday

Oh, that man.

So, I really do love my husband. Honestly. Sometimes I just wonder how old he is.

We’ve been shopping for a car for a while now. “We” sold our Durango (AKA the-one-big-enough-to-hold-our-whole-family) last fall. And by “we”, I mean I got a phone call while I was at work telling me that Steve had listed it on a website that morning, and someone was coming to look at it. I literally passed it being driven away by its new owner on my way home that day.

Since then, we’ve been doing what we can to save our money for a nice, reasonable used car, and haven’t gone anywhere as a family since we can’t all fit in his commuter car. My requirement? An SUV, with three rows. We have four kids, after all, and having room for them to spread out (plus take along an extra kid or two if the situation arises) is all that really mattered to me. Steve’s requirement? A diesel-fueled vehicle, for more pulling power and longevity. (This is the part where I mention that I average about 3K miles per year on my primary vehicle. That’s not a typo.)

We started seriously looking a couple of months ago, and about three weeks ago “we” bought this for “my” car:

So NOT an SUV. Also, I can’t see over the hood when I’m standing next to it, just to give you a little perspective on the size. (And neither can Steve, so I hope it never breaks down anywhere except at home where we have a ladder.) I also can’t get in without using the handle, or out gracefully, in any interpretation of the word. And I definitely won’t be wearing a skirt any time I have to ride in it.

Good thing I love him, huh?

Click on layout for credits.

(He also bought himself a new dirt bike while I was out of town this week, but I might have had a bit of fun shopping and getting pedicures with my sisters, mom, and grandma, so I guess it all evens out.)

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So, yeah.

I hate that I never blog now.

There’s probably no one reading this, but (let’s be honest) I’m doing it more for me. Because it’s not the blogging I miss… I do plenty of that on the Design House Digital blog. It’s the personal blogging I miss… the chance to vent, to share, to journal, to think my way through things as I type them out.

I hate that I don’t have nearly the online record for 2011 that I did in previous years. I love looking through my old posts… checking out the photos, reading the comments, and maybe even rolling my eyes at what I talked about.

So, here’s hoping I can get back into it. Even if it’s just for me.

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Survival. Yes, I made it.

Through the summer, that is. I may have had a little extra help, with Steve being home for the first half of it. Of course, one could argue that it’s like having a fifth child, but that’s neither here nor there.

The point is, it’s over. No broken bones. No major injuries. Sanity (relatively) intact.

The kids started school last week, and we’re back into a routine. Aidan’s pretty sad that she isn’t going back to preschool this year, but I informed her that her teacher (who’s going to school full-time now, thus the no-school-for-Aidan thing) told me she’s already smart enough for kindergarten. Which she did, and which is probably true. Hopefully.

I’m a little floored by the fact that this is my daughter’s last year in elementary school. I’m absolutely not old enough to have a middle-schooler, so it’s a good thing I have nine months to get used to the idea. And get old.

Here’s a layout I did last week, with photos from her first day of school:
It really is crazy to me how much she seems to change, daily. DAILY, folks!

What’s New, Cupcake?

Have you seen this book?


No? You should. It’s chuck full of completely awesome cupcakes, and a real lifesaver sometimes.

Like when your sister tells you that they’ll be celebrating your daughter’s December birthday at preschool the next day, since they were on Christmas vacation at the time, and could you please send a treat for the kids?

Yeah.

So, at ten o’clock on Monday night, I started baking. And, since I knew I would be the one ‘stuck’ eating the leftovers, I baked good stuff. Lemon Buttermilk cupcakes, with Lemon Cream Cheese frosting… YUM!

(I went ahead and did mini cupcakes, since these are three and four year old kids. No gluttony here, folks.)

So, Tuesday morning, here’s what we did:


Step 1: Snip mini marshmallows in half, on the diagonal. (I used scissors.) Drop the cut marshmallows in colored sugar and roll them around, and the sugar will adhere to the sticky innards of the marshmallow. (Now THAT is a sentence I never anticipated myself typing!)

Step 2: Make pretty piles of all the colors, but keep them away from your kids. If you must, distract them with the whole, uncut marshmallows; no sense in making more work for yourself!


Step 3: Frost your cupcakes. I like to use a bag with a large round tip; I find it quicker, easier, and neater, but you can certainly frost them with a spatula or butter knife. I won’t tell.

Step 4: Start your layering. Do a full row around the outside, pressing the marshmallows into the frosting. Since they’re so light, they can hang over the edge of the cupcakes quite a bit.

Step 5: I added a bit more frosting, so that my flower cupcakes would be really full and puffy. (Yeah, that’s the technical term.) Add a few more of your marshmallow petals. I used nine or ten petals around the bottom, and six on the second layer.

Step 6: Add your candy. These are Chewy SweeTarts, because I like the shape and colors of them. The book suggested licorice pastels, but I think those are yucky, and didn’t want to risk contaminating the lemony deliciousness of my cupcakes.

What do you end up with? This:


I think I prefer the solid color ones, although Aidan was partial to the pink/yellow combination.

Oh, you want to see the cute preschooler?

Yep. That’s one happy camper. Oh, and I very smartly made enough cupcakes for Kelsey’s birthday treat, since her big day is this weekend. They’re sitting safely in the freezer, waiting for her to decide on the style of decorations!

If you liked this, you should definitely check out what I did for Liam’s birthday! Kelsey’s cupcakes last year were a big hit, too, and they’re out of the earlier edition, ‘Hello, Cupcake!

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