Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Mommy's House Daddy's House

Mommy's house.

Daddy's house.

It sounds like the beginning of a Dr. Seuss book for helping kids cope with divorce....or something.

When we were in the process of moving Camille started calling our house Mommy's house and the shop Daddy's house.

I think it must be because Daddy spent most of his time there either working or remodeling our soon to be apartment. In her two year old mind it was where he pretty much lived.

Even now that we have been out of our house for six months she still asks to go back to Mommy's house.

They all do.

I thought they would have adjusted by now...

...but I digress.

I guess I can't blame them as I recently found myself thinking about my old house. On two recent trips back to my hometown I lined the kids up (first) in front of my old house and (second) in front of Shiloh's old house and snapped some photos.

It sort of gives a new meaning to

Mommy's House

Daddy's House.

You can see it's a very distinct story of Country Mouse City Mouse.

I find myself thinking about where I most want to live.

Right now it is definitely where we are. It's convenient,it's good for the budget,and it's freeing. 

I don't think it's forever though.

What I want is to travel around for a bit. See what grabs us. And then decide later. 

Life on the road for bits of each year is what we mostly want to do and that is what we are preparing for.

We have the truck to haul the trailer and all of us. We have a plan of saving up for the trailer and we have a plan of how to save up for it. 

More about that later,yes?

Life on the road. 
Any road. 

This road even.

It's a cute road. Who could blame me?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Sick and Tired

Sick and tired.

Also tired of sick.

This summer we have had some kind of cough that just won't quit.

No other symptoms just a cough that gags.

And there is vomit.

It gags and they can't breath and so they vomit.

Just mucus. 

It catches them by surprise and they rarely make it to the restroom.

There is an endless pile of towels,wash cloths,sheets and pillows to wash.

The coughing hasn't stopped but it has lessened.

As has the vomiting.

I thought they were well.

Then Camille tossed and turned one night with a fever and...vomiting.

The real kind.

Not just mucus.

Next day a runny nose.

Then Silas had a runny nose.

Then I left the house on errands and Shiloh said Cecily and Clara had been vomiting.

I came home,Cecily woke up and I tucked her back into bed.

Shiloh went to bed.  1 a.m. I went to bed.

Scratchy throat. Runny nose. Couldn't sleep.

I got up took some medicine and decided to look up some curriculum while I waited for my nose to dry up and my tongue to thicken.

While I waited Clara woke up.

Fever,chills,couldn't sleep.

I offered her some medicine,some kind of blue liquid that I don't ever want to give them but she needed relief to sleep.

I gave her 15 minutes for it to kick in then tucked her back in.

3 a.m. I went to bed,dozed off.

tap tap mommy

It was Cecily.

She couldn't sleep.

I got up,evaluated her symptoms,and gave her the blue stuff.

She was cold so we hunted up another blanket.

She wanted a shower.

I told her I was worried for her to be in the shower because I would be sleeping but allowed her to get in.

(There is no tub,just a flat floor)

I went back to bed,on the way feeling Camille for fever. I covered her arm that felt cool.

I was shivering but soon dozed off.

tap tap mommy

I want to get into the shower too.

It was Silas.

I blearily told him to get into mommy and daddy's shower (again no tub).

Dozed off.

tap tap drip drip

Silas again,dripping we hair.

Buddy,you can't sleep with me....I just need to sleep.

I get up (instantly freezing) and offer him some liquid smurf. 

There is something on the bottle about children under six,doctors,and liver damage.

 I quickly calculate how many days until his birthday,take his size into account and them half the dose.

He drank it and giggled at the apparent awful flavor.

Poor guy I didn't even tuck him back in.

With the ultimate goal of warmth and sleep (in that order) in mind I offered him a kiss on the head,told him to give it 20 minutes to start working (wondering if he even knew what that meant) and told him to tuck himself in.

Back in bed,shivering. I can't decide if morning would be a blessing or a curse and  I drift off.

Camille shrieked.

I opened one sandpaper eye.


a curse,make it stop

I didn't bother to get up and dozed off again.

Shiloh was there getting ready for work saying the kids would be fine. I sleepily texted and canceled all plans for the day.

I slept.

Until 12 noon I slept.

Cecily brought me in a sandwich and cherries.

I ate and then suddenly I felt rested.

 I got up. Cecily promptly took my warm spot and went to sleep.

 I warily walked into the living room expecting to find a trail of apple cores,cherry pits,and grape stems.

and ants eggs and bees legs and dried fried clam chowder

I was close.

 I found banana peels and flattened juice pouches. And one very snotty three year old.

I bathed her,threw on some laundry,put her to bed.

Cecily vomited in my bed.

I stripped my bed and sent Cecily to sleep in her bed.

Oldest and youngest sleeping.

The ipad occupies the middle two.

In 24 hours our family of six needs to be flying out with camping gear and everything we need to last 8 days.

I have washed one load of laundry and have pulled the tent off the shelf.

Somehow someway we will pull off this packing job and I will find a spare half hour to get that haircut that keeps eluding me,while hopefully managing to heal enough to fly with out the use of those little bags in the back of the airline seats.

We have to because I need a vacation.
But first I need a nap.

Right after I change the laundry...and find some appropriate bedding for my bed.

So tired of sick.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Watch Out Summer

let's see that one more time...

Go and be thrifty,
or crafty,
or both.
Either way will WoW the socks off summer.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Noodle Head

Cecily and I sat doing math from Life of Fred. 

The book tells us that Darlene is helping Joe understand a lesson on doubling by using a dried spaghetti noodle (Joe's snack of choice). She breaks it in half,then again,and again to show that one plus one is two,two plus two is four...and so on.

The book then shows us this:


and tells us to complete the image.

Now,I am trying to help Cecily understand what we are doing here without the help of a dried spaghetti noodle (we are out) and so I draw a line on her paper and use slash marks to represent the breaks in the noodle. 

I make some marks and tell her

We broke it once and got two,twice more and got four,four more times and got eight,eight times more and ended up with sixteen pieces of spaghetti. Now if we break it sixteen times...what do we have?

I put the appropriate slashes on our fake noodle pencil line.

And guys,she loves math and she was listening so attentively and she was concentrating so hard (I really could see the wheels turning) and she was so serious when she answered


And yes,it was true. All we had left were fake spaghetti crumbs. The spaces were now so tiny.

And I laugh.

But we had not arrived at the correct answer yet.

So I tried a different tactic and showed her by simply adding the numbers all the way up to 8 plus 8 and then I told her

Okay,we can use this answer of 16 and pretend that Darlene breaks each piece of spaghetti one last time.

So then I ask her

Now what do we need...?

And still so obviously picturing those spaghetti crumbs she uses her fingers to show me and tells me this:

Most likely some really strong fingernails.

(to break those tiny spaghetti crumbs)

I laugh some more and she giggles along but doesn't really know why we are laughing.

Eventually I think we went off on a tangent and learned about addition using borrowing instead.

You can learn a lot from a book but sometimes I think you just need a good real life experience.

Spaghetti is for eating.

 Joe is apparently smarter than us all.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Meet My Refrigerator

For the last three years or so eating a raw food diet has been on my mind. Our family did try out a raw food lifestyle change just after Camille was born for about nine weeks. So desperate was I to loose the baby weight that when I didn't see any change (ANY change...not even a pound) during the nine week period I got frustrated and kicked it all to the curb. Weight loss was not the only reason for the diet change but as I said I was desperate and I went back to what had in the past worked for me which was a low carb high protein thing. It was how I lost my weight with all three of the other kids but for some reason it didn't work after Camille.

I tried a whole string of diets with her. I even began running almost daily and still didn't loose those pounds. We're talking 25 pounds here. It wasn't until I did an extended juice fast last year that those pounds (most of them) went away. That was two years folks! That is a long time to be patient people. So frustrating. So anyway here I am back to dreaming of a raw food diet. The same friend who inspired me in the first place has been busy posting things on facebook and again my curiosity has been peaked. I watched a few videos,followed some links from there and stumbled upon something I am just bursting at the seams with. I'm so excited about this but am waiting until everything is finalized to blog about it. In the meantime I decided that this urge to transform our diet is not going to simply vanish and so I'm jumping in (again). This time I am not relying on pounds to fall off but rather am looking toward the future. I want my kids to be as healthy as they can be (and myself too) and I believe that this is what will work for our family.

Let's talk about calcium and protein later...cause I know you're curious. 

For now just know that I added up the amount of days I spent juicing in 2012 and they equaled over a month. That means that I ate roughly 11 months last year and am down 14 pounds. Almost to my pre-Camille weight. I still can't believe she is two and a half and I am still working on this. Yeesh. But,since I also continued to run throughout the year I have been able to connect the dots of runs that were hard or runs that were easy and look at what my diet was like during those runs. My easiest,lightest,fastest,and most energetic runs were when I was juicing. Followed by easy and light (but not so energetic) were the times I was being careful to only eat salads and fruits and drink only water. Following those were downright sluggish runs where I was allowing myself to eat breads,sugars,and pastas and drink caffeine.

I can not ignore the evidence nor do I want to. Now this change isn't all about having better runs but I do want those too. I want to run a marathon (and beyond) and I know my body can already do it if my mind lets it but I do want to feel great while I do it. And that is just one great benefit I believe I will see as I begin these new eating habits. I like to think of it as training through the back door. I'm coming at it from behind a lot of people may think but really to me I know it is the very most important factor for being able to accomplish my goals.

Now what in the world does that have to do with my fridge? Well,today I decided to make an idea come to life. I've wanted to build some sort of kids size,kid friendly salad bar for a long time. So that my kids could fix themselves food whenever they get hungry. Today I realized I could simply use our refrigerator. I decided to film the ordeal so you could see how I went about it and also because I wanted to see a before and after. This is a three part series lasting under 15 minutes total. Bon appetit!

Friday, February 1, 2013

{it's not cookie dough}

that's right

it's not cookie dough

we affectionately call it power ball mix

we use it to make power balls



make your own!

i'll help you.

pulverize some oats in your food processor,add some ground flax seed,and some chopped walnuts or pecans {not pictured}

in another measuring contraption mix together equal parts peanut butter and honey {we like pb with out extra ingredients and raw honey} and microwave for a tiny little bit. Don't make it too hot! You'll melt your chocolate.

mix the two together

{didn't you say chocolate?}



we use dark chocolate so it's a little healthier

these are square shaped but you can use traditionally shaped chips or (even cuter) tiny chips


roll into balls for the kiddos

or flatten for yourself to use on long runs as fuel (freeze those)

call your kids and tell them you made powerballs

make them do a powerball dance before they eat one

they will do it and it's fun so don't skip that step

don't be boring



add some dried fruits or chia seeds or coconut. use almond butter instead of peanut butter. sneak in some coconut oil for extra brain nutrition or kale for a serving of greens and remember to save some for the kids.


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Mexican Quinoa: a vegan lunch

Not too long ago I tossed together some ingredients I had lying around and created this:

It's so good ya'll.

These are my criteria when choosing a recipe.

-use ingredients that lie around
-must be quick
-must be simple
-must taste good
-must feed whole family as one dish


And actually since I made this up it was even easier. I didn't have to go back and forth from my laptop to the counter making sure I was getting everything right. I just thought about the flavor I wanted (Mexican) and gathered up everything I had on hand that I thought matched.

I started with a quinoa base.

Cooked it according to package directions. Rinsed some red kidney beans and tossed those together with the quinoa along with lime juice,California Dreamin (a Pensey spice...which is basically a mixture of Mexican spices),garlic,cilantro, avocado slices,and some chopped,fresh jalapeno peppers.

{please eat this}

it's the bomb diggity

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Sloppy Joes:Hold The Pickles {Vegan Dinner}



Here,I'll show you.

{cook:brown lentils}

{sautee: onion and red bell pepper}


In our pantry we have a bag of brown lentils mixed with rice that the kids play with. Usually they put it into a glass baking pan and roll cars around in it,but recently Camille has taken up 'cooking' and so I gave her some old yellow split peas and the rice/lentil combo along with some measuring spoons,cups, and bowls and let her cook freely at one counter so I could cook peacefully at the other. She made this.

{add canned tomatoes,tomato paste,ketchup,and this guy}


{oh dear}

{add these friends and some sugar as well,shhh}

{coming along}

{still occupied}

{not focused but still cute}

{mix together}

{tiny buns}


{I like the sweet pickles,but I'm the only one}

{wala: vegan sloppy joes}

No one complained. 
They didn't ban them from the 'make again list' though Clara did declare that 

"Mine has too much slop!"

I found real instructions here. Though I don't generally follow real instructions too closely,you might want to.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Our Newest Addition

Look at him!

 Seven and a half weeks and one ear is starting to stand up!

His name is Claus (rhymes with house) Sebastian and he is a lot of work but it's about time we got a pup around here (according to the kids).

I don't really know what else to say. I'm not really a dog person but I kind of like him. Just as long as I don't have to touch him (too much).

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

{vegan dinner}

{start here}



{add this}

{it's not this}

{it's this}

{mix in beans and rice}

{add toppings}



I found this recipe here via pinterest. I tweaked it to add the meatless ground. I don't think it necessarily needs it,but I just found it on super mega sale and wanted to try it. Also we used the salsa as a topping instead of mixing it in. I used my own blend of seasonings because that's what I had on hand. Whole foods for dinner.

{Imagine that}