Monday, June 29, 2009


We almost ran out of meatballs so I knew it was time to make more again. This time I used 2 lbs ground pork and 2 lbs ground beef, 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese, lots of garlic, salt, fresh ground pepper, oregano, Italian seasoning, and a little shake of Lawry's salt. Oh and a cup of freshly made bread crumbs (the crumbs were freshly made, not the bread).
I forgot to count how many I made but they're all 1-inch balls and there are A LOT of them! I baked them in the toaster oven on convection bake since I didn't want to heat up the whole house with the full-sized oven.
I put some of the first batch into a quesadilla for Giselle's supper and she liked it so much that she ate another 5 meatballs when she was done.
I think I'll be bringing some to the pool tomorrow for snacking!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

We're cooking now!

I watched Ice Age 2: The Meltdown this afternoon with the kids inside while the global warming continued outdoors.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


And this is one of the favorite songs from this year's VBS:

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Here's one of our favorite songs from Vacation Bible School last year:

I now agree

Yep, it's hot. It's currently 104 in my neighborhood according to NOAA Weather. As long as I come inside and drink a half liter of ice water every hour it's really not so bad as some people make it out to be. Dousing your head with cool water doesn't hurt either!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Fathers Day cookies

Pampered Chef large mix & store bowl, Pampered Chef 1-inch scoop, Pampered Chef large round baking stone, Pampered Chef wire cooling rack, Crisco Brown Sugar Cookies (modified of course).

Friday, June 19, 2009


Marie's back! Actually, I've only talked to her on the phone and on facebook so it's really like she's still in Sweden but Roland and the kids were at The Park today and that was really nice to see them again.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The grown up choice

When we were young 20 years ago we had a bunch of JetSkis, some hot rod some stock. Then we tired of the JetSkis and moved on to boats. We had a Glastron, a Classic, then Joe rebuilt the hull on the Classic to accommodate the ZZ4 crate motor that he put in it (that was SO great for wake boarding back in the days when it was still called 'skurfing'), then Joe got a Thoroughbred that wasn't good for water sports but it sure went fast really well. Somewhere in there I got a Bayliner to fish and ski from at 40 mph since Joe's boats didn't go slower than 50. Not long after Paul was born in our late 30's the Thoroughbred was sold and for a few years we were land-bound. Last year, after careful consideration, Joe got us back into JetSkis and SeaDoos by finding 2 of each kind in good condition. They're fun, can be shared with just about anyone, don't use much gas, are portable, are much more interactive than boats, are safe for kids with parental supervision/assistance, are relatively easy for Joe to repair, and they are FUN!

Paul passed his swimming test today and to celebrate both kids now being lake-ready, the 4 of us took the 2 SeaDoos out to Lake Austin and blasted up and down the lake for 2 hours. Giselle rode with me and Paul rode with Joe. Oh what fun it was to ride and swim together as a family! The kids didn't want to leave and on the way home were asking when we could go again.

I'm so glad that we've got the personal watercraft now instead of a boat. I'm glad that we had both skis and boats when we were young enough to have a blast with them and that we learned the easy way which was the more family-friendly option.

What fun!!

Real Simple Magazine Daily Thought

"A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person."
—Mignon McLaughlin

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Are judges the only ones that understand this connection?

This from today's Austin American Statesman news wire:

Thursday, June 18, 2009
Firing at cop gets man 30 years
A judge on Wednesday sentenced Jerel Lamar to 30 years in prison for firing a shotgun at an Austin police officer in 2007.
A Travis County jury in April convicted Lamar, 25, of attempted capital murder in the April 22, 2007, shootout with then-Austin police Cpl. Michael Barger, who is now a sergeant. Lamar waived sentencing by jury.
Barger was not injured, but a shotgun slug lodged in the door of his patrol car that he was using as cover.
Lamar's family members testified during the trial that Lamar was distraught before the confrontation and had told them that he wanted to die. His brother testified that Lamar also said he wanted to kill innocent people, including children, in a shooting spree that rivaled the Virginia Tech massacre.
District Judge Jon Wisser noted that Lamar's father had about 20 children with different women and his mother had been married five times when Lamar was a child, none of the marriages lasting more than three years.
"I don't see any possibility of rehabilitation," Wisser said. "The court is mostly concerned about public safety."

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


I've made zucchini bread 4 or 5 times, banana bread about a dozen times but never 'real' bread. You know what, tonight doesn't really count either since it's from a mix. But it's close!

Tonight I made some Tastefully Simple Bountiful Beer Bread. I baked it in my Pampered Chef Mini-Loaf Pan. Too bad I didn't have a Rada Bread Knife to cut it with, otherwise it would have been a consultant's dream.

Monday, June 15, 2009

One Thousand

In honor of this being my 1,000th post to this blog (I think I've already doubled that in my 9 months on facebook) I'm posting a picture of myself that Giselle took with my phone 2 weeks ago at the pool.


I gave another pint of blood today. When's the last time YOU donated blood?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

good day for the pool

It's SUPPOSED to be 100 for the next week. Sounds like a good day for the pool to me!

Saturday, June 13, 2009


The front four teeth are out and the front four teeth are in. Excellent spacing here; looks like no need for braces! We'll be getting those 2 six-year molars of his sealed at our July dentist appointment. I think that Giselle's are already all done; I'll have to check our records. Unfortunately, Paul doesn't have any others that are loose right now so he'll have to wait to get the cool Pokemon toys that he knows I've got waiting for him.

Friday, June 12, 2009

hot dogs at the park

We didn't cook out at Park Day if that's what you're thinking. One of our friends always brings their 2 boxers to the park and another friend occasionally brings their border collie mix. Our neighbors are out of town so we brought their dog to the park with us.
It was a 4 hour park day - 2:30 to 6:30 - and it was a rather warm day at that. It wasn't SO hot, we only drank 2 liters of water each. On the hot days we have at least a liter each before we leave home, 3 liters each at the park and 1 liter more at dinner. So from that perspective it wasn't really THAT hot today.
The dogs although, who foolishly wore their fur coats to the park on a 100 degree day, were HOT. They all drank a lot of water too but since they insisted on leaving those coats on, they just stayed hot.
But even with the heat, Fly had a really fun time and I think that she'll be happy to join us again another week.

Build A Bear

The birthday $5 off coupon came in the mail the other week. The next week came the $12 off coupon. So we went to the mall and used both coupons. Both kids paid for the extra with their own money. On the way home we agreed to go twice a year - at birthday time. This time Giselle got Rainbow Bear and Paul got Panda Bear, now they each have 3. Paul has the Triceratops, the Longhorn Steer, and the Panda Bear. Giselle has the Pink Bear, the Curly Brown Rabbit, and the Rainbow Bear. This picture was taken on the drive home from the mall.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Feels Like The First Time

The other week we made a family trip to the other side of the planet and went to IKEA up in Georgetown. Joe's been several times already but this was the first time for the kids and for me. We were there to get furniture for Giselle's room to finish it off for her to be able to finally move in there. I had carefully gone through the catalogue several times and picked out what we wanted. That morning during school I went online and found out exactly where in the 'warehouse' we'd find what we were going to buy and how many they had in stock. No shopping for us - a quick walk through the showroom, a quick meal at the cafeteria, quick pickup in the warehouse and out of there in just 1 hour and 10 minutes.

We got these two Aneboda dressers...

and this Billy bookcase.

Here she is asleep in her pink and purple paradise the day after a sleepover where she stayed up too late.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

walk a mile in my shoes

Actually not a mile, only a quarter of a mile. And Paul wasn't wearing my shoes, he was getting a piggyback ride. Our church has moved it's Wednesday night dinners to a local park for the summer and each week we're walking the 1 mile trail together as a group. Paul did half the walk with one of the Pastors, the 3rd quarter next to me and the last quarter mile on my back. Giselle chatted with a friend the whole walk. A fun time was had by everyone there and everyone is looking forward to going again next week and the week after and the week after and so on.

Day 3

Day 3 of swim lessons for Mr Paul this morning.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Craig Ferguson

Yet another person from the United Kingdom that we find highly amusing - Craig Ferguson. We're now TiVo-ing the Late Late Show. Conan stinks but evidently Joe and I are the only ones in the US that think so. Otherwise he wouldn't have been given Johnny Carson's / Jay Leno's old job at the Tonight Show.


Wondering if your little girl's clothes, or even your own clothes, would be considered inappropriate to the rest of society? Then take these 6 "Truth or Bare" tests to find out

My personal jury is still out regarding swim suits - I LOVE being tan and I prefer to wear suits that maximize my ability to get a full tan. BUT I'm 43 and don't have the body of a 27 yr old so I don't wear suits designed for a 27 yr old. I know that I shouldn't put myself out there in my bikini but I love my tan!

The same goes for Giselle, I don't see her bikinis as being sexual and I try to find affordable modest styles. But if I feel that a shirt that shows her belly is inappropriate then why don't I feel that a bikini showing her belly is inappropriate?

But it's at the pool/beach/backyard so it's different. But is it? Time to reevaluate more of my opinions.

Monday, June 08, 2009

knitting follow-up

I finished the pillow cover a few weeks ago. I've since started on another one to match it but I'm doing some color embellishing on this one. I hit a wall about 4 inches into the 2nd cover so I took a break and knitted a shawl for Giselle's animal friends. After that I was more enthused about working on cover 2 and I've got about 8 inches knitted on it so far. If I wasn't trying so hard to blow through all of my old unread issues of Martha Stewart Living, Real Simple, Everyday Food, Cooks Country, Cooks Illustrated, Texas Gardener, New Beginnings and Leaven I'd be further along.

A Texas Spiny Lizard.

They are super common all over Central Texas and at our house there's no exception. This one was caught laying some eggs in a hole in the ground a few weeks ago. Since it was 3 boys that saw the hole with the eggs, I felt it best if I took some of the eggs and put them in a terrarium inside for safe keeping. The eggs inside have never hatched (yet?). The outside hole was covered up by the boys and has never been found again.
I wonder if these guys eat baby coral snakes or if coral snakes eat these guys?

Sunday, June 07, 2009


3 sleepovers in 8 days - one in, one out, one in - one tired little girl.


Last month Giselle had her second ballet recital. Four months of class time put into 4 minutes of recital time. No parents are happy about this. Every dance studio does the same thing. One of Giselle's many best friends is going to the same place again next year so we will too.

Homeschooled Teen Sails The World Solo

Zac Sunderland is a homeschool kid from California who is just about to finish (at the end of this month if all goes well) circumnavigating the globe alone in a 36 foot sail boat. You can read his story here and you can follow his journey at .
I'm sure that my sister Angie would have reacted the same way as Zac's parents if Nick or Melinda had wanted to do a trip like this as their early years were not unlike Zac's.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

1 week ago

These are Giselle's birthday roses that we got while shopping at Sam's Club on Thursday.

The 'entrance' to the party!

This is the awesome Pokeball pinata that we made. It was originally going to be filled with 800 Pokemon cards but some looser on eBay refused to complete a sale with me so I filled it with gum, lolly pops, gummy Life Savers and a few of our foreign Pokemon Cards.

The gift table.

The god's-eye making station using acrylic rainbow colored yarn and 12-inch wooden dowels that I had glued together into crosses the night before.

Giselle making one of the final swings at the pinata.

The pinata afterwards.

The trip home for some of the 15 kids at the party.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Mothers Day

Giselle had to sing at church on Mother's day so there was no chance for her to make me breakfast which is what she wanted to do. After church we hopped into the Caddy and headed out to Nutty Brown Cafe for brunch. NICE brunch! I can't remember what we did for dinner but the day was excellent!

Thursday, June 04, 2009


I might post tomorrow after knitting, during test time, before going to The Park. It's been a busy few weeks and I've not had the mental ability to write out any blog posts.
I've got a ton of magazines to go through and pull out the articles and recipes that I want to keep - the magazine bin is stuffed - I got through 2 issues of Martha Stewart Living yesterday and another one today. Maybe another tomorrow and the rest this weekend. Then on Monday I'll be able to start on the stack of Real Simple magazines.
Knitting, I've started on the new pillow cover but got burnt out this last week and knit a shawl for Giselle's dolls instead.
I've gotta go to bed before that 2nd wind kicks in!
See Ya!