Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pumpkin Babies

The first two are Nina, the last two are Olivia. Look how chubby Nina was compared to little Liv! Speaking of is a Halloween favorite for you to try.

Really Yummy Pumpkin Cake

1/2 c. butter

1 c. sugar

2 eggs, beaten

2 c. canned pumpkin

1/2 c. milk

1 tsp. soda

2 1/4 c. flour

1/4 tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. baking powder

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

Cream together the butter and sugar. Add eggs, pumpkin, and milk and mix to combine. In a separate bowl, sift dry ingredients together, then add to pumpkin mixture and blend just until combined. Bake at 350 degrees in a greased and floured cookie sheet pan for 20 minutes. (It can also be baked in a 9x13 pan for 30-35 minutes, or in cupcake pans for 15-17 minutes).

When cake is cooled, spread frosting on top.


4 oz. cream cheese, softened to room temperature

1/2 c. butter, softened

2 tsp. vanilla

2 c. powdered sugar

Cream together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Gradually add the powdered sugar and mix to combine.

{p.s. I think this would be fun to try on cupcakes!}

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

An Apple A Day

Our 3rd annual outing to the u-pick apple orchard. Grab a box and away you go! The kids can't help but run up and down the aisles of loaded trees. And I can't put my camera away, obviously. Such a fun fall tradition. Here's a little recipe to top it off!

Caramel Fondue

1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk

1/2 c. butter (no substitutes), cut up

1 c. packed brown sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1/3 c. light-colored corn syrup

2-3 Tbsp. milk

Crisp apples, sliced

Combine the first five ingredients in a medium sized pan, and cook on medium low heat until butter melts. Stir in the 2-3 Tbsp. milk. Dip in your apples and try not to eat it all at once! It's really good over ice cream too.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Art Inspiration

A friend of mine recently asked me if I ever teach art classes for kids. Uhhh...nope. I did about 12 years ago, and I would love to do it again one day, but for now my plate is too full. Anyway, I told her I'd come up with something anyway because a) her kids and my kids are off track and we could use some kind of project and b) I'd love to catch up with an old friend.

In desperation, I searched online tonight for art project ideas. Lucky for me I found some really great artsy-craftsy blogs featuring projects for kids...I especially love this one. And how cute is this project? You could even use orange yarn and make pumpkins.

Now I'm so excited to do some projects, maybe it could become a regular thing around here again...? I did say maybe. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE doing this sort of thing and I wish it was a regular activity at our house, but with homework, laundry, dinner, baby, being a chauffer and maid, etc. it's kind of tricky to fit it in. Anyway, I'm excited. I think this will give me the push I've needed.

Hannah's Baptism

Hannah was baptized by her dad on September 26th. What a wonderful day! Having so many family members and friends there made it even better. Her two grandpas gave nice talks about baptism and the Holy Ghost, and Hannah was so happy to be baptized. What a cute girl. Afterwards we went out to breakfast at Kneader's (dutch treat) which was my best idea planning, cooking, or cleaning on my part!

We love you Hannah, and we are so proud of you.
You have made the right choice.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Bride To Be

Just wanted to share some favorites from a recent bridal photo shoot. The lovely miss Taryn was so much fun to work with, and what an amazing dress too! Wedding photos coming soon...

Eleven Months

The world's smallest standing person.

This is a week over due, but my baby is now 11 months! She can stand on her own, and sometimes she'll take one or two steps, but then she gets nervous and drops to her hands and knees. She waves bye-bye with both hands and says, "BAH-buh." She blows kisses by putting her hand over her mouth and leaving it there, and claps whenever someone says, "Yay!" When she gets her hands on anyone's cell phone, she holds it up to her ear and talks really loudly, "Dadada!"

She likes most food, but she just doesn't have a really big appetite. She's about 18 pounds (the same as her 7 month old cousin). She is also getting into cupboards and drawers and clearing them comes trouble! Time to get some cabinet locks. She's almost figured out how to go down the stairs, since Clayton and my dad were coaching her for about an hour last night. She's super smart, and super cute. I love you Olivia! And I LOVE kissing your soft little cheeks. I can't believe it's almost your birthday.

California! {part seven}

Going home! We split up the trip again by spending the last night with Chris' parents in New Harmony, which made it so much easier. The kids were great {dvd system in the car=best invention ever} and we only had a few carside potty stops. I just can't figure out why Cheez-Its taste so much better on road trips...they were a staple on this trip, haha! You might call us Cheez-It connoisseurs now.

A couple interesting things happened when we got home...first I discovered that someone had gone number two in my bathroom and neglected to flush it before we left. It was over 80 degrees in the house all week, so needless to say, my bathroom smelled like a Honey Bucket.

Then Hannah decide she wanted to take her first earrings out since it had been eight weeks since she got them. As I was trying to pull the stubborn backings off she said, "I'm more scared now than when I got my ears pierced!" She was standing on a stool in the bathroom and practically hyperventilating. I finally pushed the new earrings through, and just as I said, "Look in the mirror how cute those earrings are on you," she was tipping over like a tree. She passed out and made a dent in the bathroom wall with her head! She convulsed a little and her eyes rolled around, which terrified me, then she snapped back to life and was white as a sheet.

Poor girl, she has apparently inherited the woozy gene from me.

California! {part six}

Nina cleaning the mud off with a soda lid.

Chris ALWAYS has his camera...

Another great day at Coronado Beach. Clay got all eight of the kids involved in making the coolest sandcastle ever, and Chris and W. made a forest of mud trees all around it. Everyone that passed by commented on what an amazing castle it was! Then after taking a final picture, the kids jumped all over it and destroyed in a matter of about 10 seconds.

We decided with Chris and Natalie to take turns watching each other's kids so we could each have a date night while on vacation. Clay and I went out to Benihana when it was our turn to go out. When it was our turn to watch all the kids we did a barbecue down at the hotel pool, and swam for a bit. The funniest thing was when we were heading back up to the room with all 8 kids and all the crazy looks that people gave us. Clay was at the front of the line and all the kids were sandwiched in between us as we headed up the stairs. I was in the back carrying the baby. People that saw us seemed to be in shock! I called to Clay down the hall, "Hey! We're like the Von Trapp family on The Sound of Music!" (plus one). Clayton said, "Yeah, but this is how family vacations actually were for me as a kid." He's the oldest of eight. Oh, and when I went to get some towels, the girl at the front desk thought it was so amazing that we had four kids. She asked me so many questions about motherhood and, "What's your best advice?" So funny!