Monday, December 27, 2010

More Christmas Pics


Me and my brother Aaron.

Uncle Aaron with the boys.

The dirty Santa game was a hit. There was stealing of gifts going on left and right, amazing how many people crave a mini shop vac!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Kaden's Christmas Performance

He did so good! He sang and did hand motions! We are so proud.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Fun with Brooke & Blake

We had help decorating our cookies. Brooke and Blake live down the street and their mother, Dana, and I met at church. We have been in Bible studies together and share coffee in each others kitchen often.

On this particular day I let the four kids ice some cookies. Sadly, not many of the cookies were left after the event. The lure of the shortbread was too much to deny. We also made star ornaments for eating or to put on the Christmas tree.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Chocolate-Citrus Cake with Candied Oranges

Kaden helped me clean the kitchen by licking the beaters.

Kolin got the spatula.
And here is the finished product. I got the recipe from the front cover of a Southern Living (my new favorite magazine!). I candied the oranges, whipped the cream over a pan of simmering water, and made the ganache in all its glory and orange liqueur. It was pretty, but honestly was too fancy for our taste buds. We made a serious dent in it though and shared it with friends.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Gifts from the North

The boys were surprised by a large package on the porch today. Inside were gifts from Grammie T. and Bonka. Each boy got a cute outfit, everything from the hat to the socks. Kaden loves his glow-in-the dark shirt and Kolin likes his wolf socks the best.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Lava Cake

Kolin requested a volcano on his birthday cake and I aim to please. Here is the cake before the eruption with lava icing, dinosaurs eggs, crushed cracker ash and even a swimming hole for T.Rex. I used two cakes. One I baked in the 9x13, the other I baked in my Pampered Chef Batter Bowl and a ramekin which I stacked.

This is brachiasaurus guarding his eggs among the trees.

The eruption begins. That's Ian there with Kolin. He is Stephanie's son and he is between Kolin and Kaden in age. They play really well together and we try to get them together as often as we can.There was lots of smoke and lava poured out and ran down the mountain. My trial run went a little better the day before, but by the looks on their faces I think they liked it.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Bus Ride with Pappy and the Brown's

Just before Thanksgiving we got a surprise visit from Kandy's Grandparents, Kolin and Kaden's Great-grandparents. Though they were only here for three days they managed to swindle many of my dollars by ganging up on their poor granddaughter as we played a card game called 31. I'm just kidding of course, we had a lot of fun playing as we always do when we are together.

Pappy has been out of town for the past 3 months and it just so happened that he was passing through town on one of the three days the Brown's were here. So Pappy took us all for a ride on his bus. The boys really enjoyed looking out the big front windows and not wearing their seat belts. They also discovered a bag of Oreo cookies in the back which added to their fun.
These pictures were taken during the ride.

Kaden's Thanksgiving Performance

Kaden's class invited us to share dessert and watch the class sing Thanksgiving songs. Kaden did wear his cute turkey hat and stood with his classmates, but did not utter a word during the singing. Stage fright I suppose. Nonetheless, we enjoyed the performance.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Dinosaur World

To coincide with Kolin's school curriculum on dinosaurs, Mom and I took the boys on another field trip. A friend recommended Dinosaur World in Kentucky. We went on a Monday and it felt like we were the only people there for most of the day. We walked along a wooded trail and looked at all the life-size dinosaurs and their families. There were placards along the trail with information about each dinosaur. Both of the boys wore their explorer hats and binoculars for better dino viewing. We sat in a cave and watched a somewhat disturbing movie about the life of a small dinosaur. The boys took part in a fossil dig where they each collected several fossils that they got to bring home. There was also a covered fossil dig where the boys worked with small shovels and brushes to uncover the skeleton of a stegosaurus. There was also a great gift shop where Nana generously bought the boys some Dinosaur gifts.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Fun In the Garden

Creative summer fun. You will have to ask the boys what they call this game. It involved "hats" and the sprinkler. Whatever it was, they had a fun time playing it.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Science Experiment

This is Kolin with his colors science experiment that we did in August. We made a chart and recorded what happened when we mixed colors together. Even little brother got to participate.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Konrad is 35!

Happy Birthday Konrad! In case you can't tell, the cake is a football field and the goalposts are on fire.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Chicken Shake Up

We have had a bit of a shake up with the chickens lately. We bought 6, 4 white, 2 brown. One white died. Then the leader of the white chickens decided she liked Mrs. Virginia's yard better than her own and she continually escaped to scratch up Mrs. Virginia's flower beds, taking two of best girlfriends with her. This of course did not make her happy. I had a hard time telling the white chickens apart so I spray painted an orange dot on the back of the one I thought was causing trouble.
Then one night we accidentally left the coop door open and low and behold Mrs. Virginia called about 7AM to tell us she thought something had gotten one of the chickens. So I went out to investigate. Sure enough there was a trail of white feathers from the garden, up towards the house, around Virginia's shed and then all the way down into the field. I followed the trail until the feathers stopped but did not find the chicken. I saw two dogs running around so I figured they had cleaned it up.

The remaining 2 white chickens still escaped the fence so we decided to trade the white ones with a friend for his full grown, bigger chickens that we did not think could escape the garden fencing.

After the trade Konrad told me about a wild white chicken he saw down in the woods. I figured the chances of there being a wild white chicken were far outweighed by the possibility that our chicken had survived her attack. So we kept an eye out and sure enough we saw her. The boys and I chased her through the woods for a long time but finally gave up. Then a friend told us that chickens were blind at night so find out where she's roosting and then go get her at night. So at dusk I went down there and I found her in a tree about 7 feet up. We waited until it was dark and then I convinced Konrad to go with me because without a ladder he was the only one tall enough to get her. Our plan worked, he grabbed the chicken in the dark and we put her in the coop. She had big hunks missing from her back and neck and virtually no feathers, but she recovered, grew new feathers and now lays nice white eggs.

Here is a picture of some of our eggs. The big one is from one of the traded chickens and her eggs always have those grainy lines on them. The color of their eggs don't seem to change, but they have gotten bigger as the chicken got older.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

September 2010

In September Kaden started his second year at Mother's Day Out. He is now in the 3's class. There are 10-12 students and 2 teachers. He carries his lunch to school in a Cars themed lunch box and pulls a Thomas backpack. Kolin continued his Kindergarten studies at home.
My Mom and I took the boys to ride on Thomas the Tank Engine. It was also a Game Day for the Titans football team. We rode a real train pulled by Thomas all the way to downtown Nashville and we arrived just in time to see fireworks exploding over the stadium when the Titans scored a touchdown. The boys got tattoos and explored a petting zoo while we were there. It was a full day and the boys fell asleep quickly in the car and slept all the way home.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Anniversary Trip

Konrad and I celebrated our 10 year anniversary a little early with a road trip. Ken and Tina were planning a trip to Tennessee in August and we decided it would be a great opportunity for them to spend some quality time with the boys while Konrad and I hit the road! We drove to Tunica, MS and ate like kings. We especially enjoyed the Paula Dean buffet-delicious!-and Jack Bunion's where Konrad had a 22oz steak. We drove over to Mussel Shoals, AL and stayed at a hotel there with a fun pool and an arcade with Kandy's favorite-Mrs. PacMan. We drove home on a section of the Natches Trace which is a scenic highway that stretched from Mississippi through Tennessee and I believe into Kentucky, but I could be wrong, it might end in Nashville. We stopped at little towns and had a picnic by a stream and followed the GPS into the middle of nowhere. You could hardly call it a road.