Thursday, December 30, 2010

 I meant to get started on blogging our trip yesterday- but it turns out those three people vomiting in buffalo led to one more person vomiting in toledo. I got the vomits BAD yesterday. Worst ever. Like EVER ever. But it's over now and I feel great- so I'm back to blogging.

 Nannie Annie, Gramps, and Daysa stayed at the Marriott down the street so we took full advantage of the pool!  The kiddos LOVED it. 
 From the back it is really hard to tell Henry and Zeb apart.  If Zeb hadn't been on Kent's back in this picture I would have guessed that was his head for sure. 
 These two boys are pretty good friends and I love that they are close in age so that they can be friends growing up!  They do tend to fight and scream at each other- but when it comes down to it- they really love playing together.
 Kent and my mom and Henry decided to do a little Polar bear roll in the snow!  Not a chance that I was going to take part- but I did get pictures of Kent.  He jumped in the hot tub afterward and said it hurt like crazy.
Thanks, Nannie Annie and Daysa, for taking us swimming!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas 2010 has come and gone in a whirlwind!  With only three people vomiting, one trip to the ER, one ear infection, and some crazy gall bladder issues with full body itching and major abdominal discomfort- it seems that we actually did better this year than last.  Maybe Christmas should be ruled a germ and pain free holiday?!  we have the worst luck this time of year!  Luckily we are incredibly blessed and we were with family, had the best time ever, and ate so much delicious food. What could be better than that?!  If Metta had been there- it would have been perfect. We missed you and Clair like crazy, Met!

I took 439 pictures- but I'll only post a small spattering of the christmas collection! At the moment this one pic will have to do. For now we're off to go get food for our fridge and return half our gifts! 

Friday, December 17, 2010

Zeb loves to sit up on top of his dresser and watch the snow fall. I am so glad that he loves it!  he tromps through it in his snow boots every time we get out of the car (which is actually really annoying because he's really slow and gets really wet) but I love that he loves it.  It has made me think a lot about the attitudes that I inadvertently (or often times intentionally ) teach my kids.  I think most of life is based on attitude and choices we make and I hope to be able to teach my children to be positive and happy- no matter what comes their way.

 I'm sure I've taught my kids to really dislike a lot of stuff- but snow is not one of them :)

And then there's Ike and his strange clothes habits. I am certain that I haven't taught him to be so particular.  Many days he insists on wearing FOUR pairs of superhero undies over his diapers.
 There's also an obsession with character clothes. No offense to lovers of these clothes- but I am not a huge fan of shoes/pants/shirts, etc. covered in winnie the poohs and sesame steet characters.  Ike LOVES them. I have caved and gotten him a few at yard sales- but I didn't think he'd be so obsessed. He giggles and smiles every time he sees the 'Wall-E' shirt (we've never even seen the movie).  Then, of course, he's reminded of his elmo pants and he wants them on together- with his shirt tucked in.  We don't go out of the house like this.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

We just opened kent's letter with the FABULOUS news.  We got our top choice and we are moving to Dayton (in June)!!

"Second Lieutenant CHARLES K MILLER , the JSGME Board’s decision is:
You are selected for PEDIATRICS. Repeat – you are selected for PEDIATRICS.
The training location is WRIGHT PATTERSON" 

I'm not sure why they felt that they needed to 'repeat' the peds part!  we are so so so excited!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

early christmas tomorrow!!!!

Have I mentioned that our lives will change dramatically TOMORROW?!?!  it's match day for Military residencies!!

I am so excited.  super nervous. pretty sad. but still- mostly excited.  I thrive on change and excitement and meeting new people and trying new things!  I guess that's one of the reasons the military fits our family so well.  We're pretty adaptable and open to change and diversity.  Maybe I'm wrong- but I'd like to think I'm right.

Lately I keep getting all of these Texas vibes.  But my life plan puts us in Dayton-and I'd like to stay on course with the plan :)  We'll just have to see what's truly in store for us.  Luckily- no matter the outcome- we have five months to prepare and anticipate. And no matter the plan-we'll be happy.

The e-mail with the news is supposed to arrive in the morning- but since I think an e-mail is a SUPER boring way to get exciting news- Kent promised he'd print it out WITHOUT looking- then he put it in an envelope- seal it- and we'll open it together over lunch or dinner or something! All of my plans to help make everything more exciting may be thwarted with a phone call- but I'm willing to take that chance.  Plus- Kent promised that if he does get a phone call- he won't tell me what they say until we've opened the envelope :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

'banana' and two recipes (see below post for 2nd recipe).

 The animated short 'bananas' was on tv last week and the kids haven't been able to get enough of it.  It's from the movie 'Despicable Me'.  The kids loved this little cartoon so much that we actually took them to see the full movie this weekend at the local 'dollar' theater. We decided since they were free and our tickets were so cheap that it wouldn't be too much of a loss if we had to leave early.  Both of them ended up loving it.  I'm surprised they did so well- and that it was so kid friendly.  No scary parts- and the little orphan girls were so cute.  It was a pretty funny movie, too. Steve Carell did the main character and was hilarious.

Here are the monkeys watching the 'bananas' film on youtube. I bet they've seen it fifty times now.

 We had our church Christmas party last night and ended up with a bag of ham after clean-up.  I don't usually cook with ham- but I got this recipe from a friend and made some adjustments to make a delicious dinner. Kent LOVED it. I really liked it. and best of all it was super easy.

                                                               Potato veggie ham bake!

6 medium potatoes (8 small)
8-12 ounces sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
chopped ham (as much as you'd like)
1-2 heads of broccoli (steamed al dente)
1/2 bag chopped fresh spinach

dice and boil potatoes until tender.  soften broccoli to al dente and chop into bite size pieces.  Mix everything together-sprinkle with cheese- and bake in 9x13 pan for 15 minutes!

recipe from best bites.

I've been trying a bunch of new recipes- but not posting many so I'll try to add a few this week. I got this recipe and picture from best bites.  It's super duper easy and quite delicious.

Baked chicken taquitos

Makes 14-16 large taquitos
 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup green salsa
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 green onion, sliced finely
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 cup grated cheese
small yellow or white corn tortillas
cooking spray

Mix all of the wet ingredients together- then add everything else.  Spread 2-3tbs of mixture onto one end of tortilla (leaving space on each side) and roll up. Place sealed side down on pan.
If you use corn tortillas- make sure you moisten and heat them (two or three in the microwave for about 30 seconds) or else they are really hard to work with!
Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.  Sprinkle taquitos with salt and and bake until crispy and brown on ends. about 15 minutes.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

This week has been so looong.  Maybe it's cause we've been vomiting and spending lots of time in the bathroom.   I haven't had vomits like that in YEARS.  I'm so glad that it's all over.

In happier news- we finally got our first snow that stuck just a little!  Ike was so excited he could barely contain himself.  Once we got outside the day it snowed- he just kept giggling and pointing and yelling "Snow! Snow!".  And zeb has been begging to play in it nonstop!  Yesterday he asked me: "mom, why do some people not like the snow?  It's crazy and amazing!"  He must have heard people complaining about it at the gym or something- because I told him that I agreed- it is crazy and amazing.

 He played outside today with his friend Randy and the two of them had so much fun throwing snowballs. I even got to go for a run in Swan Creek (my park) and it was so nice with snow on the ground- but the sun shining!
 Ike doesn't like to actually touch the snow yet- but Zeb definitely does.  Zeb must take after me- because he even tasted it.  I remember when I was little that I LOVED to eat snow. I'd even bring it inside and make snowcones out of it with juice or koolaid. 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

 Days like today are the real reason I LOVE this time of year.  Kent got off early from work and we got to spend the day together SHOPPING!  I really don't love to shop but something about working retail for so many years has made me crazy about Christmas shopping. I love it. I love being in the stores and seeing all of the decorations and hearing all of the music and meeting other shoppers and buying gifts!
 After our long day we came home and sent our letters off to Santa and read Christmas stories.
This is the first year that Zeb has been VERY specific about what he wants for Christmas.  I thought for sure we were toast.  He is completely SET on the fact that Santa is bringing him a Blue Lightning MacQueen that has silver wheels with shiny piston cups on them.  I had NO idea what he was talking about. I had to google it.  It turns out it's a toy he played with MONTHS ago at a friend's house.  We hadn't talked about it since then- hadn't seen it anywhere-and I didn't even know it existed!  I searched SEVEN stores and FINALLY found it at a Walmart in one of the outlying communities here in Toledo. $3.50. Mission accomplished. We should have a very happy three year old Christmas morning. 

Sunday, December 5, 2010

 Kent goes back to school/work on Monday and I'm pretty bummed.  We had a great past two weeks- but now Ike is a COMPLETE daddy's boy and wants nothing to do with me. Seriously.  He won't let me feed him, dress him, or even change his diaper.

This weekend we had a fabulous time just being together. We worked out, played, shopped a little, and watched Kent take part as one of the Wisemen in the live Nativity.  It's my nightmare- having to stand still and not talk for an hour- but Kent says it wasn't so bad. They actually got to talk to each other and move around if they needed to.
 These two rascals were a little rambunctious at the event so after we looked around for a bit- I took them to the nursery room and let them play with toys. They are such brothers. They love to chase each other, wrestle each other, race each other, and even hold hands.
Having them sleep in the same room is ridiculous. They giggle and laugh and squeal until one of them just can't take it anymore and zonks out.  Zeb tells Ike knock-knock jokes (that make ZERO sense) and then they both laugh and laugh and laugh. 

They also both LOVE my glasses right now.

Zeb has been acting pretty grown up lately.  I actually feel like we are real friends and I love it.  He got to go to Primary for a little while today and was so excited initially. Too bad he HATED it. It was kind of sad and cute at first. His eyes filled with tears and his lower lip sat and quivered- and then he just started wailing and it wasn't cute at all anymore.  He says next week he'll be ready and old enough and there won't be any tears. We'll have to see.  Any suggestions?! 
Ike is getting more and more manageable and his fits are far and few between. Have I mentioned how much easier of a toddler he is than Zeb was?! 

I can't believe that Christmas is so stinking close.  I can't wait for it.  I love this time of year- but I want SNOW!!!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

As you can see- Ike really enjoyed his time at our family outing to Bass Pro Shops!  This is his favorite face of late and I can't tell if it's hideous or kinda cute- or maybe just hideously cute?  what do you think? 
Bass Pro shops has the COOLest Santa's Wonderland ever.  The fact that it's all free doesn't hurt at all! They've got remote control monster trucks and remote cars on racetracks to play with with - our two boys were in heaven. We may have been the only people there whose winter coats weren't hunting camo or bright orange- but we enjoyed ourselves nonetheless.

Zeb LOVED the snowball throwing arena.  There must have been ten kids in this big tent just going crazy hurling 'snowballs' at each other.
He also sat and watched the trains FOREVER.

and here's Zeb and Kent shooting their rifles.  I'm pretty sure it's the closest they'll get to shooting real guns.
The place really was amazing.  They had so many cool things to do.  There were crafts, coloring books, and- of course- Santa!  They even gave us Santa pictures for free! 
With Kent being off of work/school we've really gotten a good headstart on Christmas!  Zeb wakes up every morning asking if it's here yet.  The next 23 days are going to be looong!!  Luckily they are packed with all sorts of fun stuff to do.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

having our fun!

I never got around to posting- but Saturday we ran the Holiday Hustle and watched the glow in the dark parade in downtown Maumee. It's our fourth year in a row doing it- and it was definitely the coldest that I can remember!  The race was fabulous- but after we stopped and the sweat froze it became pretty miserable.

The race itself was especially fun because I ran with my 5K class. I just taught an eight week class at the YMCA called 'train to run your first 5k'.  It was so much fun. I loved the people in the class and I loved running the race with them!  I told them they need to run a warmer 5k before they decide to give up on running altogether. Most of them loved the race despite the frigid temps.

 Here is another shot with a bunch of the ladies from the class.
 A bunch of friends from church also ran it!
 We tried bundling up the rugrats as much as possible.  Ike fell asleep before the race even started- and Zeb loved seeing all of the Christmas lights!
 I didn't actually run in my pj pants- they were just keeping me warm until we got moving!  kent and I ran the race together and took turns pushing the stroller. These kids are getting so heavy.

 After the race- we waited for what seemed like FOREVER for the parade. We should have just gone home. It was waaay too cold and the parade was a little on the lame side this year.  Both kiddos were freezing- and I couldn't feel my toes. The idea of the parade is quite magical and festive- but the execution this year was lacking.
 On Sunday we stayed in all day to thaw out and relax.  We made our own thanksgiving dinner so we could eat leftover turkey sandwiches all this week! Plus I got a turkey for free at Meijer- so we had to cook it up before it went bad!
 We also put up our Christmas tree.  We caved and got a fake one last year on clearance (six bucks!).  I was sad but Kent said no more to the live trees.  He claims that he's still picking up pine needles from last year's fire hazard of a tree.  I think he just hid a stash somewhere and pulls them out periodically to show me.
and here are some funny pictures of Ike trying to do a somersault.  I really thought that he was going to snap his neck. It was ridiculous how far he'd bend on it before realizing he wasn't going to be able to flip over that way.
He is such a monkey.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving Shopping

We started off Thanksgiving week a little early with a shopping trip up to Ikea.  The closest is up near Detroit so we made an afternoon of it on Tuesday.  It's been so nice to have Kent home!!

I love Ikea and I'm super glad that it's far away so I'm not tempted to spend buckets of money all the time.  Plus, when we go it's kind of like a mini vacation.  The kiddos love the children's furniture section.
And for a little while we actually got to drop Zeb off at Småland and run around with just Ike.  I think that both rugrats were quite happy about the way it worked out.
We also got to have lunch in the cafeteria. Ike wanted nothing to do with the meatballs.  I don't love them, either.  Kent ate all 15.

 This kid is obsessed with stuffed animals. He's already got a gazillion so this dog wasn't about to come home with us- but he loved it nonetheless.
We left Ikea with a small bounty of chachki.  Bowls, cups, candles, etc.

For our Black Friday shopping adventures-we were going to camp out at Target- but at ten PM as I was checking the deals one last time- I realized that our items were all available on their website for the black friday price with FREE shipping! I bought everything online right then. Then, instead of catching a few hours of sleep early on, Kent and I hit Walmart at midnight when their deals started.

You know you've reached adulthood or momhood or something when you hit the midnight sales for these.
These bins were 2 bucks each.  Nobody else was even near them. No lines, no stampedes, nothing.  We picked up six, paid for them, and made it home in just a few minutes.

Laney and I decided to get up early and brave some of the crazier crowds in the morning. We hit the gap (50% off everything!!), forever 21, old navy, target, best buy, big lots, and meijer.  The deals weren't all that fabulous- but we got a few good items.

We especially loved this Santa Claus.  Can you tell what nationality he is?  because he had the most ridiculously thick and hysterical accent.  He couldn't see out of the costume head and just kept giggling: "I can't see!  I can't see!" in the funniest Japanese accent ever.  They were outside of a Japanese Store and were so so funny.  Maybe I was just really tired.

 Later that night we finished off our Black Friday at the outdoor mall again.  We waited in the FREEZING unbearable cold for twenty dollar giftcards!
I may look like a fool- but I'm the only one that dressed appropriately.  Unfortunately that meant I was the one who waited the entire hour in line while the others took shifts to come and visit me.  They passed out hot chocolate and cookies while we waited, though.  
Laney had to use Milly's blanket on her head.  It was in the single digits with the wind chill.
Ike kept asking for a "jacket, please!".  He didn't realize he already had his coat on.
 Then when we got in the car both rugrats kept complaining that their hands were hot!
 It was crazy cold- but we met some fun people- saw some friends- and got eighty bucks for our time. Totally worth it and a black friday tradition.