Friday, August 22, 2008

Tropical Storm Phun

After being trapped in the house for several days due to a tropical storm, the kids were desperately needing to burn off some energy. So, Tom took them outside to splash in the puddles. The cold hard rain did not stop them from doing the puddle dance of joy or from racing through the natural slip and slide!

For more Phriday Phun, head over to Candid Carrie and play along with her phabulous foto fiesta !

Monday, August 11, 2008

Stew anyone?

About 14 years ago, my ex-husband was active duty Air Force. Every three day weekend, a group of us would head up to Yosemite National Park to hike and camp. Because I was a new SAHM, I was the one responsible for making the dinner for the first night. I always made a big delicious vegetarian stew.
That trip, we were all excited. It was October, snow had fallen to 9000ft. and we were going to make camp at 7000ft. It was perfect weather for stew and we were all looking forward to eating it.
Thursday, the night before we were to leave, I began the soup. I chopped all the vegetables, pressure cooked the beans, made the broth, measured out the spices, and started assembling the stew. Everything was going along so smoothly. The smells were so intoxicating that I could hardly wait to eat a bowl of it. But, I resisted.
Finally, Friday morning. I am checking everything twice: tent, stew, baby back pack, baby, cold weather gear, hiking boots, stew. Oh, the stew. We are all anticipating the stew.
We drive the 4 hours up to the campsite. We hiked in a little ways and set up our camp. Since, we made good time, we all decided that we would do a small day hike and eat the stew later.
Finally, STEW TIME! We heat it up on the fire, spoon it out for everyone, and sit down to eat.
The first spoonful enters my mouth and YUCK! Something is terribly wrong with the stew. Maybe it is just me! But NO! Everyone is sitting around the fire with a mouthful of yucky stew in their mouth and starring at me!
In unison they exclaim, "Michelle, something is wrong with the soup!"
Well, it ends up that I had put in 6 TBS of cayenne pepper instead of chili powder.
It was inedible. It was horrible! We all spit it out and poured out the entire batch! It was so bad that I don't think the bears would have eaten it.
Now, we are starving.
We had to hike back to our cars and drive down into the valley and hope that the market was still open. Nope, no such luck. So we had to leave Yosemite Park and drive to the nearest town. We finally found a pizzeria. It was $20 for a large cheese pizza, but we were hungry.
I was teased about the stew for many years after that. For Christmas that year, some of them gave me jars of chili powder!
If you would like to read more cooking horror stories or share one of your own, please visit Absolutely Bananas.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Snow Monster

Three years ago, we took the kids to Whislter, BC and played in snow. This was Girly Wirly's first time in snow. She fell in love. She wanted so badly to learn how to snowboard with the boys that she would wear their helmet anytime they weren't using it.
To this day, she still talks about the snow and informs us that "we can move if it is to snow!". OH, the monster that we created!
For more phun fotos, please visit Candid Carrie.

Updated For Moose:

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Cute & Cuddly?

The speed limit is 55. But everyone is doing 70 on a two lane road that cuts through a swamp. We have been driving this road for almost a year and everyone has warned us about gators crossing the road or feral pigs.
"Be vigilant" everyone says.
"You will total your car if you hit one!"
Well, I have been vigilant. All that I have ever seen is birds flying and the usual road kill (possums, raccoons,ie).
I was beginning to believe that people were making up stories about the gators. Until Monday.
The car in front of me slammed on their brakes. Forcing me to lock up mine and sling all of the kids forward in their seat belts. I'm cursing under my breath about what is this idiot doing! We are in the middle of the swamp with no other cars around.
Then I see it. A four foot gator is racing across the street. It was so adorable and fast. I could see why the Crocodile Hunter called them cute. Okay so not like a 'cuddly take it home with you' cute, but it was cute! And fast!
I couldn't believe how fast it was. I started screaming for the kids to look out the window, but they were still in shock from me hitting the brakes so they missed it.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Top 10

Here is my Top 10 list of things that I have learned from my kids:

1. Babies smell sweet and yummy.
2. Mommy kisses can heal any boo-boo.
3. Veggies taste better from my plate.
4. The only difference between my teen and my toddlers temper tantrums are their word choices (poopie head vs. BLEEP).
5. World of Warcraft is addicting.
6. They remind me to take baby steps and to get up when I fall.
7. They have taught me to be consistent.
8. I have learned that my post-pregnancy belly is their favorite and funniest squishy toy.
9. I have learned that when I am away, Dad lets them do things that I don't (like watch Sponge Bob).
10. The biggest thing that I have learned from them is to love unconditionally and laugh often!

To play along or to view more lists, please visit Absolutely Bananas.

Making a Stand for Summer

5 Minutes for Mom is having a photo contest. Come and play for your chance to win $500.

Here is my entry:

Here is what you get when you take gymnasts (and little sis) to the beach.

*Click on photo for a larger view*

Friday, August 1, 2008

Safe & Sound

This picture was taken after Dave (my BIL) returned from Afghanistan. I love this picture because it is nice to have him home alive. I can only guess how difficult the deployment was for Dave, but I know how difficult it was for my sister and niece and nephew. I am proud of them all.
For more great Fotos visit Candid Carrie.