The Kids

The Kids

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Gob Recipe

It is recipe time again.

Here is a great one for super healthy cookies.  Oh wait, I should have put that in quotes to emphasis the sarcasm.

Some people call them Moon Pies, our family has always called them Gobs.  Whatever the title, here is the super yummy recipe...

For the cookie part
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup shortening
2 eggs
4 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup cocoa
1 cup sour milk (to make sour milk, mix 1 Tbl vinegar with 1 cup milk)
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup boiling water

Cream together sugar, shortening and eggs.  Add flour mixture (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cocoa).  Mix together sour milk, vanilla and boiling water, then add to mixture.  Bake at 350 for 5 minutes.  Cool on a wire rack.

For the filling part
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
5 Tbl flour
1 1/4 cup milk

Cook together 5 Tbl flour and 1 1/4 cup milk until thick.  Cool the mixture.  Cream together 1/2 cup shortening and 1/2 cup butter.  Add 1 cup sugar and 1 tsp vanilla.  Add flour mixture when it is cool.

Once the cookies are cool, spread the filling on one cookie, then place another on top.  Yummy, sticky dessert :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Lessons In Ear Care

After writing about Caleb's injury, why not add on a painful Abby story?

I cannot remember if I mentioned this before, but one of Abby's Christmas gifts was getting her ears pierced.  She had been begging for awhile, but then finally stopped-you know what, I will let her tell you the story.  She wrote about it at school with the theme being, "Teasing Mom doesn't work!"

Once I really wanted to get my ears pierced and I told my mom and dad that I would clean the whole bathroom.  I teased and teased but it didn't work.  I even cleaned my room.  For about five years I kept teasing my mom.  But the only answer was No, No, No, No and mabe.  Mabe almost always means No.  After about five years of asking and asking and asking and asking I finally got my ears pierced.  But I had to stop asking for a long, long, long, long, long, long time to get them done for a Christmas present.  The end.

First of all, she did not offer to clean the bathroom.  No one in this family has ever offered such a treat.  Secondly, the maybe meaning no thing is kind of true.  She has learned young.

Anyway, Abby got her ears piereced and has done a great job taking care of them.  However, a couple of weeks ago, she ran out of her ear solution.  Instead of driving to the mall to buy a new $9 bottle, I figured that peroxide could do the trick for the last two weeks of treatment.  It is a cleansing type of solution, right?

Not exactly.  Apparently, it dries the ear out more.  Whoops.  After awhile, one of her ears started to get red and sore.  I applied neosporin and attempted to move the earrings back and forth, which suddenly created a stream of blood and puss.

My apologies.

We immediately got the correct ear solution and continued to treat her ears like we should have been.  For a few days, her ears continued to leak fluid, but it was a good thing, because her ears started to heal.

Now, for the hurtful part.  When I got the solution, I took her earrings out so that I could really clean her ears and the earrings.  Well, I tried to take them out.  Have you ever seen the little studs that they give little girls for their first pair of earrings?  It was almost impossible to take them out.  Picture this (if you can handle it)-Abby's one ear was slightly swollen, my too large fingers were trying to pull the earrings from the backing, she was in tears, and then, out of nowhere, her earring went into her ear.  The actual earring-IN HER EAR! 

As the screaming continued and I blindly attempted to wiggle it back through the tiny hole, my heart hurt for my little girl.  I finally got it back through, then all the way out and gave her poor little ear a break.  After cleaning everything, I gently put the earrings back in and my brave girl was okay.

And this is exactly why I did not want to give her earrings when she was younger. 

She is now fully recovered and today is the day that she can officially wear other earrings.  I tried to take them out last night and was not successful.  The backs are just so tight and so small!  I have heard other moms complain of the same thing so it is not just me.  I am thinking using some vaseline might help?

I write all of this as a warning to other parents of little girls.  Use the correct ear solution! 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Just Another Friday Night

Caleb is such a boy.

The kid has already had a baseball bat to the nose, a bee sting that nearly closed his eyes and many other smaller injuries that make me wish that I had stock in band-aids.

So, why not add on another freak accident?

I was leading Abby's American Heritage Girls meeting in the school library.  Nick was on his way to pick up the boys and rescue them from all of the giggling and while he was waiting, Caleb played in the playhouse.  It is a wooden playhouse with two built in benches.  While my back was to him, I suddenly heard a thud and a loud scream.

As I dove into the little playhouse to comfort my injured Caleb (which was no easy task given that I have a sore knee that hurts to bend-but that is for another story), I had to wonder what on earth he did to himself to create such drama.  As I held him and comforted him, I finally dared to look at his face.  Blood.  Right by his eye.

Inside, I was crying, "Please tell me he did not cut his eye!"  Outside, I calmly said, "Okay, let's go get this washed up."

I took my screaming child to the bathroom to stop the bleeding with a paper towel.  However, since it was a Friday afternoon, the paper towel dispenser was completely empty.  Thankfully, the school nurse had not left, yet, so we quickly cleaned up in her office and applied ice to rapidly swollen eye.

At closer look, I found the source of the bleeding.  A huge, deep cut right next to his eye.  As his eye turned black and blue, and the screaming continued, I realized that he would probably need stitches.

At this point, Nick walked into the school.  When he entered the building, he heard the screaming and saw people in the entry way looking concerned and speaking in whispers.  His first thought was, "I'm so glad that's not my kid crying like that."  Within seconds, he discovered that he was quite wrong.

We gathered the kids and headed to the ER, which is thankfully about three minutes from school.  I must mention here how proud I was of Abby.  When I ran into the library and told her that we had to leave, she did not cry and pout about leaving her meeting.  She said, "Oh no!" and quickly got her stuff together.  Her concern for her brother outweighed her desire to have fun with her friends.  Quite awesome and rare.
Waiting in the ER

The ER staff was amazing for Caleb.  While I was still signing him in, he already accumulated a stuffed dog and two coloring books.  After a quick examination, they decided to use some kind of glue (I think it is called dermabond) instead of stitches.  Thank the Lord that stuff exists.

I went home with Noah once I realized that there would be no more pain involved.  Apparently, everything went well until one little mishap.  A drop of the glue got onto Caleb's eyelashes, causing him to not be able to open his eye.  After some panicking and crying from a hungry and tired Caleb, they finally got most of it off.

Enjoying some much needed pizza after the drama
Now, my poor boy is recovering.  He has a swelled eye that only opens part of the way, a few eyelashes that are still coming unstuck from the glue, and a bruise on his nose.  Oh, did I not mention?  He also bumped his nose.

When asked how all of this happened, Caleb's only response is, "I don't know.  It just happened."

I am so thankful that it was not as bad as it could have been.  However, I keep having this thought...Noah is a boy.  I have two boys.  What on earth am I in for?

Thursday, February 23, 2012

If I Had A Million Dollars...

Actually, one of Abby's latest writing assignments was called, "If I had $100 I would..."  Enjoy.

If I had 100$ I would buy a Ameracan girl doll.  I would get Kit.  Or I would get two bitty babys and a 20$ thing.  Or I would get all One hundred and sixteen Boxcar children books.  I love The Boxcar children!  I only have thirteen of the box-car children books.  But if I had to choose one, I would choose to get Boxcar children books.  I love Mysterys!  If there was no such thing as books, I would cry.  Or mabe I would get two bitty Babys.  They are such cute babys!  I have one Bitty Baby at home already.  I would have three Bitty Babys!  Mabe I would get One Ameracan girl doll.  I would have three of those!  I have two of those at home, if I got one more I would have three!  Mabe I could get one of each thing!  That would be so much fun!  Mabe I could get one thosand books and nine hundred of them are free!

Oh, my sweet dreaming child.  If there was no such thing as books, I think I might have to cry as well.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

30 Years

My parents just celebrated 30 years of marriage yesterday.

Now, most couples would plan a trip, have a party or go out to eat to celebrate such a special day.  My parents?  Not so much.

I should probably explain-my parents run a dairy farm.  Which means that nothing ever goes according to plan.  One day, we had lots of family visiting from out of town and the electricity went out.  No storms or anything-it just went out for fun.  The day that Nick proposed, one of our dogs was hit by a car and died.  The day of my wedding...the water went out.  Right after the bride had a shower, but still, not a lot of fun for everyone else.  My beloved dog, Andy, also died that week and we had to bury him the day before the wedding.  The night before my brother's high school graduation party, a tornado went through.  It knocked out the power and tore through the tent that was already set up.

So, it should be as no surprise that yesterday, when my parents were planning to celebrate their 30th anniversary, the cows ruined it.

One of the cows delivered a calf during the middle of the night.  When my dad went out to the barn in the morning, the calf was dead and the cow was struggling to survive.  Clearly, that dampered any celebration plans.

However, I do not think the cows actually ruined their anniversary.  Sure, they ruined the day, but my parents do not need one day to realize how fortunate they are.  30 years of sharing life with their best friend.  Two grown kids who make them proud (I can write that without sounding conceited, right?).  Three grandchildren who love to visit them on the farm.  And a life that is never, ever boring.

Happy 30th Anniversary, Mom and Daddy.  Thank you for being a wonderful example of what a Christ-like marriage should look like.  I love you.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

I Love Calebisms

I love my little Caleb.  Just a few fun conversations with him...

-We were driving through a part of town called Indian Hill.  If you are not from Cincinnati (or have not seen the movie Traffic) Indian Hill is where you see mansions and estates.  There are beautiful homes in the middle of wooded areas. 

As we drove through, Caleb announced, "This must be where the Bigfoots live!"

I was disturbed by two things...

One being that Caleb believes in Bigfoot.  The other being that my city boy's idea of what woods are is to think that Indian Hill is the woods.  We definitely need to plan a hiking trip soon-outside of Cincinnati.

(A bit of explanation-Nick and the kids enjoy watching a television show called "Finding Bigfoot."  If you want some laughs, give it a go.  My smart 1st grader has figured it out that they will never find Bigfoot, because then the show would be over.)

-A discussion with Nick and Caleb this morning...

Caleb:  "Did you know that we are never alone?  It says that in the Bible.  That you are never alone."
Nick:  "Where does it say that?"
Caleb:  "Matthew.  But, I can't remember where in Matthew.  It says, 'I will be with you always.'  Even if you think you think you are alone, you are never alone."
Nick:  "Why are we never alone?"
Caleb:  "Because Jesus lives in our heart."

Later in the day, while in the car together...

Nick:  "What have you been learning at school and church?"
Caleb:  "That we are never alone.  And that Jesus died for us."
Nick:  "Do you know how he died?  Do you know what the word crucified means?"
Caleb:  "No.  Wait?  Does that mean He died on the cross?"
Nick:  "Yes.  Do you know what held Him on the cross?"
Caleb:  "Ropes?'
Nick:  "Well, they used nails."
Caleb:  "Wow, that must have really hurt.  Wait, is that why He has holes in his hands?"

How many times has this kid heard about Jesus and the cross and all of the sudden, it all makes sense?  He was so concerned about how the nails must have hurt Jesus. 

How many times have I heard the story and have forgotten how much the nails must have hurt?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Great Deal Friday

Excuse me while I market myself.

As a Mary Kay rep, I have decided to start having great deals on Fridays.  You can check on here every Friday to see what the latest deal is.

Today, it is the Timewise Age-Fighting Eye Cream for only $20 (usually $26).  This great product dramatically minimizes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

If you want to get on this deal, leave a message and let me know (unless you know me well enough to know my cell/email, then you can let me know that way).

And of course you are always welcome to order other things as well.  I will not object to that.

Thanks for letting me self-promote.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Conversations Over Breakfast

Just a glimpse of some of our conversations this morning...

-Caleb:  "Do men who work at stores get to have families?"
Me:  "What?"
Caleb:  "You know, the men who work in stores.  Do they ever get to have families since they are never home?"
Me:  "Caleb, people who work in stores only work for a certain number of hours a day, then they go home.  Just like Daddy works all day and then comes home."
Caleb:  "Oh!"
Me:  "Caleb, did you think that people who work in stores live there and never leave?"
Caleb:  "Yeah.  I didn't know they get to go home!"

Wow.  Apparently, everyone who serves Caleb at stores and restaurants does not have a life.  They are simply there to wait on him.

-Nick is talking about Africa to Abby's class today, since they are currently studying parts of the continent.  He was getting his presentation ready this morning and Caleb asked, "So, is Abby's class going to Africa?"

The poor boy sincerely thought that Nick would be planning a trip to Africa with 18 1st graders.

Love that kid.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Should Be 35 Years

My cousin, David, would have been 35 years old today.

He passed away suddenly ten years ago and as each year goes by, I feel like it just happened.  The last time that I saw him was on my wedding day.  His oldest son was our ring bearer and his youngest son was so, so little.  It continually breaks my heart that the boys do not have their dad around to watch them grow up.

Since my brother is eleven years younger than me, leaving me to feel like an only child for a long time, my cousins felt like brothers to me.  While other little girls were playing dress up and having tea parties, I was off having adventures in the woods with the boys.  I could have been playing jump rope or with Barbies, but no-I was pretending to be in the army and fighting battles. 
Coming back from one of our many adventures in the woods

I miss David.  I miss him when I see our kids play together and wish that he could watch them.  I miss him when all of the family is together at Thanksgiving and Christmas. 

Someday we will have a sweet reunion in Heaven, where there are no more tears.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

To Work Or Not To Work

Lately, I have been toying with the idea of getting a job.  It comes from this desire to help with our income.  I have been watching Nick run himself in circles, working three jobs, just so that I can stay at home.  And since the culture we live in pretty much requires two incomes to be able to feed a family of five, I figured I might have to give in.

Of course, the moment that I started thinking about it, I thought of someone else being with Noah all day and missing the summers with the kids and I immediately started to cry.

I was only talking with Nick about getting a job, but somehow Caleb must have overheard us.  Out of the blue, he said to me the other day, "I don't want you to get a job, Mom."  When I asked him why, he said, "Because I love you and Daddy the same."

It took a little questioning to realize that he meant that he loves the way our family works.  He loves his dad working and coming home to him.  He loves me being here.  He also added, "If you had a job, who would be here with us?"

Okay, so getting a full time job is not in my near future, given my tears and my five-year old's guilt trip.  In the meantime, though, I keep waiting for that dream job from home that I hear that other moms have.  You know, the ones who work from home for a great company?  Apparently, they exist.  I just have not found them, yet.

I know it is a short time that the kids are this age and eventually we will become a two-income family again.  But, sometimes, it is really hard to see that far down the road. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Abby's Writings

Just a few snippets from Abby's writing these days...

The theme that was given at school was "How do you get to Heaven?"

I think that when Jesus comes, we will come on a cloud and flot up to heaven.  I think that heaven will have sand all over the ground and there will alwas be a rainbow in the sky.  There will be a huge house right next to a beautiful sea.  I think I will go to heaven someday.  I think I will go because I am a christian and I belive in God.  I am pretty sure I will go to heaven.  I know heaven is for real.  I know in heaven is where God lives.

Another random story about pets...

I really really really really really need a pet cat.  I will die if I do not get this kitten.  I am seven years old and I still do not have a pet!  I promise to take care of it!  Let me please just have one-just one cat!  If you do not let me have this cat I know is waiting for me I will shoot you!  I really will!  I will save all my money for it!  I will not save my allowance for anything else.  You can not convenice me to even get a ameracan girl doll instead of a cat!  But if you do, I will ask santa for that cat and he never dissapoints me!  He always give me exactly what I want!  He is the best person in the world!  He would give me anything I want.  Or grammy will give me a cat.  My cat could play with little Noah.  I don't care if he does play with my cat!  I would name my cat Rose.  I think Rose is a pretty name.  I love cats more than anything.  I already have fish.  I don't want a dog.  The only animal I want is a cat!  I would feed my Rose three times a day.  I would do any thing to get that cat that is waiting for me!  I love cats more than anything!

Hmm.  We went from Heaven to shooting me for not giving her a cat.  I think there is a contradiction somewhere between these stories.

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Latest On Noah

Noah has been fun these days.

My little tornado thinks it is his job to destroy the house.  Stop by any time of the day and this is what you will see...

Pots and pans on the living room floor
Plastic lids and containers scattered all over the kitchen floor, in the perfect spot to slip on
Toys...everywhere...ironically enough, not being played with
Full pop cans in the middle of the floor, that have been rolled around for awhile
Socks everywhere
Important papers that belong on the fridge, now wrinkled and slightly torn, somewhere under the couch
Magazines torn and left in pieces
Board books, that are made for babies so that they do not get torn, in pieces, usually in Noah's hands as he brings them to you to read, one page at a time
A tired me, standing in the midst of the mess, asking "Why, Noah, why?"

I used to read Real Simple for great organization tips.  I have come to learn that the editors of that magazine in no way have little kids of their own.  Sure, they may claim to have the perfect toy storage bins and ways to make a small room appear larger, but if they truly had little kids, they would simply write this...

"To all moms of young children-give up and try again in a few years."

I suppose that would not sell a lot of copies.

Anyway, in the midst of the destruction, Noah does have his cute moments.  He loves socks.  The other day, when I had just finished folding laundry (quite a task to complete with Mr. Tornado around), he grabbed the folded socks and decided that he had to have them all-at the same time.  We went to get in the car to pick up Caleb from school and he would not leave the house without carrying his treasures. 

Which is why I am still finding socks under the seats in the car.

He is trying so hard to communicate with us.  He can say a few words, one being socks (shocking, I know).  He eats absolutely anything in front of him.  He is fearless and thinks he can keep up with Caleb.  Currently, he resembles Rudolph, with a very red nose.  He fell on the pavement and thought it was a good idea to stop his fall with his face.

I still cannot get this kid to watch tv.  He will watch something if it is on in the van, but at home?  Nope.  Hence the destroyed kitchen while I cook.  Apparently, breaking one of my favorite bowls to put vegetables in is more entertaining than Elmo.

And, finally, the boy is obsessed with his penis.  Every time that I change a poopy diaper (which is A LOT), he giggles and tries to touch down there.  The technique that I find that works is to hold his arms down against his chest with one hand and change the diaper with the other hand.  Yep, call me Super Mom.

Funny enough, he does not try to touch it when he is only wet.

Oh, I must mention my favorite thing that Noah has started doing.  Praying.  When we sit down to eat, he folds his hands and looks at us, waiting for our words.  After someone prays and he hears the magic words, "Amen," he yells out, "Dah, Dah!"  Translation=Amen.

Now, I would love to take credit for my holy child and say that we always make a point to show him the proper way to say a blessing before eating and before bedtime.  But, sadly, Noah is normally in the highchair, pushed to the side, while we are dishing out food to everyone with the kids praying before shoving the food in.  Somehow, he still figured it out.

I would love to write more, but Noah is currently grabbing the cord from the iron that was left out from when I was ironing Abby's American Heritage Girl badges on her vest and he is attempting to put it where it belongs-in the outlet.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Beautiful Day

Yesterday, Nick and I attended the funeral of a beloved camp friend. 

The service was beautiful with the pastor presenting the gospel to all who were there.  And Deb's daughter, still so young, sharing her thoughts about her mom.  She did such a lovely job and handled herself with grace and maturity.  Every word that was spoken by her and the pastor just brought on more and more tears.  Some tears over the loss, but most tears over the beauty that Deb must be seeing right now.

When we arrived home later that evening, the kids were still up, waiting to say good-night to us.  As Abby was getting ready for bed, she quietly said, "Guess what?  At school today, I gave my heart to Jesus."

I was floored by this announcement, partly because I know my little girl's heart and if she were suddenly to be taken from this world, there would be no doubt in my mind where she would go.  So to hear her say that she just now did that was almost surprising.

Once I let it sink in and stopped everything to really hear her, it was amazing.  Apparently, her teacher was reading a story and finished with a prayer.  She invited the students to pray the same words in their hearts if they deeply wanted to, which Abby did. 

I mentioned Abby's prayer to her teacher this morning and she said she was amazed at what went on in her class yesterday.  She said the Holy Spirit must have been really working because a bunch of the students said the same thing. 

Yesterday was a beautiful day.  I got to celebrate the life of my dear friend, who is with her Savior right now-seriously-right now!  Then, I got to hear my seven-year old announce that she now knows the same Savior and wants Him to be Lord of her life.

My heart is full.