Monday, February 28, 2011

Uh oh.  Yesterday I realized that I have become THAT mom.

Yep.  The PB & J mom. 

3 times a week. 

I should have seen the warning signs.

My kids telling me about their friends' awesome lunches, and the occasional "I traded...", and the stomping whenever I mentioned peanut butter...

I should have figured it out. 

But I didn't.

Because who doesn't love a good PB &J? 

Apparently my children.

So I need some lunch ideas. 


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

February has been brutal.  In a good way.

At our house, we have 3 birthdays in February.  Birthdays are fun and exciting and special.  They come with fun surprises and gifts.  And cake. 

{This was a chocolate mint ice cream cake for Jesse's birthday}

{This was a yummy Snickers cake that Tyson and Mindy Dye made for my birthday}

{This was Bella's cookie brownie cake}

A single birthday cake from time to time is really nice. But 3 birthday cakes within two weeks of each other--plus Valentine treats and a chocolate torte for a church activity, not to mention miscelaneous goodies--

{Valentine cherry pie}

I think you get the picture.

We have had more than enough treats this month.

We are soooo ready to move on.

That's why I was so excited to pick up my very first Bountiful Basket on Saturday.
I have to admit that I was a little nervous when I went to pick up my baskets of fruits and veggies on Saturday morning, but it was pretty painless.  I had pre-ordered and pre-paid online the Monday before, so they just handed me a box and checked my name off of their list.

THIS is what I got!

There is a ton of food here!
I had to immediately wash everything because my kids pounced as soon as I walked through the door. 

I also had to clean out my fridge so everything would fit.

My meals and snacks this week will be centered more around the fruits and veggies, and it will be way easier to whip up a great salad with all of the neat stuff that came in my basket.  I know I could just go buy at the grocery store, but I don't.  And I certainly couldn't get all of this food at the grocery store for the price that I paid for the basket.

I have already ordered my basket for next week and can't wait to see what is in it.

Click here if you want more info on Bountiful Baskets.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Today I find myself in the middle of 7 or 8 projects. 

As you all know, I've been going through a little organizational and decorating crisis.  This stems from my long-held manic assumption that my husband would finish grad school, find an amazing job in an exotic location and we would move into the house of my our dreams.  While holding this assumption {and nurturing it with healthy meals and lullabies} I stopped caring about my current house {why bother if we are just going to sell it, right?} and decided to put off organizing things until we moved and were happily settling into our new home. 

{that was the sound of my bubble bursting}

Sometimes things happen differently than you expect in life--not neccessarily for the worse, but long story short, we are not moving. 

And I have neglected my house. 

And now it needs me.

So today, I thought I would show you my next project.  This is another one where you might want to scroll past fast if you have any heart conditions.  This is our office.

Nice, huh.

I've decided to show you all this fine photo, because now I have to clean it.

I, Kathy, promise to whip my office into shape within one week of this post.


Another project that I had written off was dressing my kitchen window. 

Here it is.

So, so sad.

I recently purchased the perfect fabric for a nice valance.  This will also be completed this week.

There are many, many more things to do in this house. 

I also have some other projects going on.  Here are a few of them:

I need to finish making my son's birthday cake,

I'm waiting for the fabric to finish this quilt to come in the mail,

and I need to finish getting these Visiting Teaching Messages ready for everyone to make at Relief Society on
Thursday night.

What've you guys been up to lately?  I would love to see your projects.  But I don't know how to let you link them up here.  Does anyone else know how?

Monday, February 14, 2011


I love a day that celebrates chocolate.  And kisses.

And flowers.

And hearts.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 7, 2011

This is your lucky day!

I'm feeling a little crazy and am going to share with you a secret family recipe.  I figure, if you've got something good, you should share it, right? 

The other day, we ran out of jam.  For some people, this might not be seen as a huge problem, but at our house, it was tragic.

Jam runs through our veins. 

We love it that much.

However, we have been spoiled and only eat homemade freezer jam.  We've tried to do store jam and just can't hack it. 

You could even go so far as to say that we border on jam snobbiness.

So I ran to the store and collected ingredients, and made a quick batch of jam. 

It really was quick.

And easy. 

And sooooo good! 

And after you try it, you may never be able to go back.

First, wash and hull your strawberries. {I know that my collander looks like it has seen better days, but as I was contemplating replacing it, I came to the conclusion that I really liked it all cracked and broken because it made it more collapsable and it's easier to get into the cupboard that way.}

Then, take a few strawberries and start blending.  I start with just a few so that I can get a good liquid base and then the rest are easier to blend.  On a side note, I would like to thank my 10 year old daughter for these amazing photos of me making jam.

Once you get a good liquid going in the bottom, add more and more strawberries until you have 5 cups of liquid strawberry. {Don't blend as much if you like chunky jam.}

After your strawberries are blended, pour them into a large bowl and set aside.

Next, take 2 boxes of dry pectin {I like MCP--the Sure Jell makes it kind of jiggly}
 and dissolve and bring to a boil in 1 and a half cups of water.  I always use a whisk to get the lumps out.  Let it boil about a minute, but watch it because it will boil over if you aren't careful.  

Pour the pectin mix into the strawberries and stir. 

Next, add two packets of Strawberry Kool-Aid and stir till blended.  {I think that is the secret part of the secret recipe...}

Then add 6-7 cups of sugar {depending on how sweet you like your jam} and stir until blended.  Continue stirring for about 3 minutes, then let sit on the counter for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After your jam has set, divide into freezer-safe containers and store in your freezer.  When you are ready to use it, keep it in the fridge.

This recipe usually makes about 8-10 cups of jam.

Also, I have made a variation of this recipe in the past with rasberries and rasberry Kool-Aid, and really, you could do like a peach-strawberry or any other combination that you can think of.

So there you have it.  Happy jam-making!

Yeesh...I think it actually took me longer to post this recipe than to make it.
I know you all have been dying to know which fabric I ended up picking for my ottoman.  Sleepless nights, nail-biting, etc...

But in the end, I decided to go with...

The cheetah print!!!

I really love the green fabric, but decided I needed a little fun in my life, so for now, I went with the cheetah print.  {I kept the green and brown fabric all ready, because realistically speaking, it won't be long before kid grime destroys the cheetah, anyway.}

It was a pretty easy project, and I only ended up with one injury. :)

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