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Follower of Christ. Wife to Adam. Mama to Joshua (10), Abigail (9), Esther (8), Hannah (7), Noah (6), Joseph (4), Peter (3), James (1), and Mary Grace (4 months). Soli Deo Gloria!
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Adam and Laura

Adam and Laura

Joshua Addison

Joshua Addison

Abigail Lauren

Abigail Lauren

Esther Rebecca

Esther Rebecca

Hannah Ralene

Hannah Ralene

Noah Evans

Noah Evans

Joseph Patrick

Joseph Patrick

Peter Edwin

Peter Edwin

James Emil Robert

James Emil Robert

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Monday, November 29, 2010

Noah Wants to Know...

Noah has decided to apply for a teaching job at the local university. He's trying to choose which picture to submit with his resume.

What do you think?

I think they're all irresistible, and I'd hire him in a heartbeat!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Psalm 100

Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth!
Serve the LORD with gladness!
Come into his presence with singing!
Know that the LORD, he is God!
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless his name!
For the LORD is good;
his steadfast love endures forever,
and his faithfulness to all generations.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Picture Update

Here is a collection of pictures to show what we've been up to the past few weeks!

I found Tumblin' Monkeys at a yard sale for $.50 (it's $27.99 on Amazon!), and we've had so much fun with it! I love cheap entertainment. :)

We've been on a few walks/bike rides. Abigail has been asking me for a while to take her training wheels off. I'm a little challenged when it comes to that sort of thing, so I told her she'd have to ask Papa. She finally remembered when he was home, and now she can ride just like her big brother!

We made some fall crafts.

Joshua, Abigail, Esther, and Hannah participated in a half marathon back in October. We walked/ran 12 miles over the course of 2 weeks, and then did the last mile at the actual event. They all got a medal!

Abigail and Hannah did an exceptionally good job...they worked very hard and didn't whine the least little bit. Hannah moved her little legs as fast as she could to keep up with her big siblings, and Abigail ran the whole mile on the last day! They were very excited about their medals.

Joseph has spent his last few weeks eating, growing, and just sitting around looking cute. :)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Six Months

Our sweet baby Joseph turned 6 months old last week. I have no idea how the time has flown by so fast! Joseph weighs 15lb 9oz and otherwise checked out just fine at his appointment yesterday. Up until a few weeks ago, he was exclusively breastfed. Nursing was going better than it ever had, thanks in part to my sister-in-law Amanda giving me a recipe for loose leaf Mother's Milk Tea. If you have supply problems, I highly recommend it! The loose leaf version works so much better than the pre-made tea bags that you can buy in the health food store.

Anyway, about 3 weeks ago Joseph was obviously hungry after nursing. He refused to take a bottle, so I just kept nursing more and more. That didn't seem to help, so I kept pushing the bottle. He eventually decided to try it and inhaled 6 ounces of formula. That was after nursing. The poor little guy was hungry and he's been downing bottles like a pro ever since. He did not back off on the nursing at first, but he has since gotten frustrated and seems to nurse only for comfort. I think he's about to hang it up, though I will let him go as long as he wants to.

I was surprised that he did not weigh more at the doctor's office yesterday. He seems to be fattening up nicely to me, and I thought he'd be up to the 50th percentile or so. He's at the 10th for height and weight. For whatever that's worth! He's eating well and seems satisfied now, so I am happy. I started him on a few solids last week. He's had avocado, sweet potato, and banana, and has devoured everything offered to him. He doesn't want to be outdone by his siblings. :)

He got his first hair cut last week. He had some random long hairs that stuck out wherever they felt like, so we got those under control. Joseph is such a sweetheart that sometimes I can barely stand it! His brothers and sisters still think that he's the greatest thing ever, and he loves their attention.

Before the hair cut...a little blurry

And after...much better!

Menu Plan Monday

Here is what is on our menu this week...nothing too involved or time consuming!

Monday - Chili over Rice, Bread, Vegetable (to be determined)

Tuesday - Grilled Chicken Salad

Wednesday - Leftovers

Thursday - Kielbasa Casserole

Friday - Tilapia, Salad, Bread

Saturday - Leftovers or Waffles

Sunday - Sandwiches (lunch); Leftovers (dinner)

Visit Laura for more Menu Plan Monday ideas.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Heidi Hair

Pam's Pride recently sent me a few links to some hair blogs. I really like this one, this one, and this one. Now all I need is a few hours every day to play with my girls' hair!

I've always wanted to know how to do a braid all the way around the head. I learned how from one of these blogs, but I can't find the post now. If I find it I'll add the link here. I'm not very good at it yet, and it's not quite right, but the girls loved having their hair like this and it ended up staying in pretty well.

Noah really wanted to be in the pictures with the girls. He kept squeezing in between them and saying "cheese". :)

Monday, November 08, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

Noah fell asleep eating his soup during lunch today. :) I'm not quite sure how that happened with all of the sibling chaos going on around him. He must have been worn out from the weekend!

Well, we didn't exactly stick to our menu plan so well last week. Monday's dinner got messed up because of rotten chicken, which bumped everything back a day. And then I forgot that Adam had National Guard drill in Atlanta over the weekend. I don't usually cook when he is gone...we just have leftovers or sandwiches or something really easy. It turns out that I didn't make two of the recipes that I had planned, so I'll just do some swapping around and insert them where I can. Here's what we're eating this week!

Monday - Venison Stroganoff, Spinach Salad, Homemade Bread (if I can get around to making it this afternoon. I use this recipe in the stroganoff instead of using a canned cream soup, and it's wonderful!)

Tuesday - Lasagna, Broccoli, Bread

Wednesday - Leftovers

Thursday - Pot Roast, Spinach Salad, Bread

Friday - Chicken Sausage with Peppers and Basil (side dishes to be determined)

Saturday - Leftovers

Sunday - Sandwiches (lunch); Leftovers (dinner)

Visit Laura for more Menu Plan Monday ideas!

Monday, November 01, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

I have been awful at meal planning lately, which translates into an uncomfortably large grocery bill and extra stress around dinner time every day. I got together with a friend last week and we planned meals for the month of November together. It's a whole lot more fun if you do it with a good friend! And it feels so wonderful to have everything on the calendar and most of the groceries in the refrigerator and pantry. Here is what we are eating this week.

Monday - Thai Peanut Noodle (this plan actually got scrapped tonight because the chicken stunk when I got it out of the refrigerator. I loaded everyone in the van and returned it to Sams, and then we headed to Moe's for Moe Monday. It turns out that the line was all the way out the door, so we went to Chick-fil-A instead. It was "family night", which means free kids' meals! I got there a little after it ended, but they were very kind to give me free kids' meals anyway. And they even helped me carry the food out to the van! I love Chick-fil-A!)

Tuesday - Garlic Vegetable Soup

Wednesday - Leftovers (although we may actually have the Thai Peanut Noodles from Monday)

Thursday - Chicken Sausage with Peppers and Basil (recipe below)

Friday - Beef and Bean Burritos (recipe below)

Saturday - Cucumber Dill Wraps (recipe below)

Sunday - Sandwiches, Chips, fresh Fruit and/or Veggies (lunch); Dinner at church

Chicken Sausage with Peppers and Basil
From the Rival Crock-Pot Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes

1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic,minced
1/2 yellow onion, minced (about 1/2 cup)
1 pound sweet or hot Italian chicken sausage (I usually use turkey sausage)
1 can (28oz) whole tomatoes, drained and seeded
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-in slices
1/2 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/2-in slices
1/2 orange bell pepper, cut into 1/2-in slices
3/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Crushed red pepper flakes to taste
Salt and black pepper to taste
Hot cooked pasta

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat until hot. Add garlic and onion, and cook until translucent. Remove sausage from casing and cut into 1-inch chunks. Add to skillet and cook 3 to 4 minutes, or until just beginning to brown. Transfer to crock-pot with slotted spoon, skimming off some fat. Add tomatoes, bell peppers, basil, pepper flakes, salt and black pepper to crock-pot and stir to blend. Cook on high 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until peppers have softened. Adjust seasonings to taste. Serve over pasta.

Beef and Bean Burritos
From Fix, Freeze, Feast by Kati Neville and Lindsay Tkacsik
*I love this cookbook because each recipe provides one meal to eat and two to freeze. It is geared towards warehouse shopping (Sams, Costco, etc) and this recipe uses a whole tray of ground beef...or you could substitute the big packages of ground turkey.

1 tray (about 6 lbs) lean ground beef
1 cup taco seasoning (this is a lot cheaper at Sams than it is at a regular grocery store!)
3 cups water
40 ten-inch flour tortillas
8 (15 oz) cans refried beans, any variety (I make my own beans using this recipe)
*I like to add some cheese. A little cheese never hurt anyone, right? :) We also eat ours with fresh salsa and sour cream.
Aluminum foil
8 one-gallon freezer bags, labeled

Brown beef in a large stockpot over medium heat until no longer pink, about 20 minutes. Drainand discard fat. Add the taco seasoning. Stir in water and simmer mixture over medium heat for 20 minutes, or until the liquid is almost entirely evaporated. Cool. Spread 1/4 cup ground beef and 1/3 cup refried beans (and don't forget the cheese!) on each tortilla. Wrap burrito-style and then wrap each piece individually in foil. Divide packets evenly among freezer bags. Seal and freeze. Thaw the burritos in the refrigerator or reheat them straight from the freezer. Bake in foil at 375 for 30 minutes if frozen, 300 for 30 minutes if thawed.

Cucumber Dill Wraps
From The Everything Cookbook by Faith Jaycox, Sarah Jaycox, and Karen Lawson

1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 medium cucumber, finely chopped
3 tbsp chopped fresh dill or 1/2 tbsp dried dill
1 tsp wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Other Ingredients:
4 tortillas
8 leaves romaine lettuce
1/2 pound sliced cheese
2 tomatoes, sliced
1 small red onion, sliced thin or chopped
1 medium avocado, peeled and sliced
1 cup alfalfa sprouts

In a small bowl or in a food processor, mix the yogurt, cucumber, dill, vinegar, salt and pepper. If mixing by hand, be sure to chop the cucumber very finely. Spread a large spoonful of the sauce in the middle of a tortilla. Begin layering the rest of the ingredients. Roll and enjoy!

For more Menu Plan Monday ideas, visit Laura!