Friday, January 4, 2013

Last day of vacation!

I am one of those moms who loves having her kids home.  I love days off, snow days, and vacations. If I was organized enough I would probably home school my kids.  Since we were sick most of vacation we really wanted to enjoy our last day of Christmas break.  The kids and I slept in until 9:30. It was wonderful!  We finally had a chance to really play in the snow.  They had a great time.  They also asked me if we could do the letter of the day again.  I was successful a couple years ago of completing every letter and every state, but I have had a couple other starts and stops.  I figured we would go ahead and give it a whirl again.  The older two want to teach Brendan his letters...  So we started with the letter A.
Aidan got an animal book for Christmas so he requested that I print out pictures of animals to color.  I printed him out an anocanda. Brendan got an aye-aye lemur. I got an aardvark.  Abigail didn't want an animal.  She wanted a princess. She got Ariel.  They did a beautiful job coloring and we even got Brendan to learn and say purple.  (Side note....  i was so proud of him learning to say purple that I couldn't wait to show Jason.  I pulled out the purple crayon, showed Brendan, and said, " what color is this Brendan?" Clear as day he says, "Blue." Oh well.)
The kids wanted to know what kind of craft we were going to do. We decided on making an alien.  It was nice to watch them work so well together on it.

They covered an old shoe box with bright paper.  They made one big eye using a bunch of little buttons and painting them. The mouth was a painted paper cardboard roll. The antennas were straws. The arms were foiled covered paper towel roll cut in half. I think the finished product looks like what I would imagine an alien to be!  The best part about this project was that there was no right or wrong answer!  We don't really know what an alien looks like :) 

Another part of our A day was making something for dinner that started with A.  In the past, I've done A shaped pizzas, but I decided to search my piles of cookbooks for something adventurous. 

I found "Adobe Asparagus Rice Bake" from this cookbook: One Pot Favorites 100 recipes for Delectable, Healthy Soups, Casseroles, Skillet Dishes, and Desserts  By: JoAnna M. Lund

page 121


2 cups chopped fresh asparagus
1 cup hot water
1 (10 3/4 - ounce ) can Healthy Request Tomato Soup
1/4 cup skim milk
2 teaspoons chili seasoning mix
2 cups hot cooked rice
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded Kraft reduced-fat Cheddar cheese"


"Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with butter-flavored cooking spray. In a medium saucepan, combine asparagus and water. Bring mixture to a boil. Cook for 10 minutes or until just tender. Drain. Return asparagus to saucepan. Stir in tomato soup, skim milk, and chili seasoning mix. Add rice and 1/2 cup Cheedar cheese. Mix well to combine. Pour mixture into prepared baking dish. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup Cheddar cheese evenly over the top. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Place baking dish on a wire3 race and let set for 5 minutes. Diving into 4 servings."

**I doubled everything in this recipe except I only had about 3 1/2 cups rice.  I used frozen asparagus, brown rice, regular Campbell's Tomato Soup, Hot Cajun Seasoning Mix instead of Chili Seasoning and 8 ounces of Sharp Cheddar Cheese instead of 6.

I was quite skeptical when I made this recipe.  The ingredients were just so different together.  However, it was a real winner!  My husband said this was one of his favorite "new concoctions that I have come up with."  Each of the kids loved it and even the baby had 3 helpings!   I'm trying to have 2 meatless meals a week and this one fit perfectly!   It will definately be one we will make again... a perfect Friday Lenten meal! 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

January 1st. Just a day of barbies and dressup :)

January 1st was a wonderful, relaxing family day.  We all seem to be feeling better, so I started the morning off by making some homemade cinnamon rolls.  I used a mixture of two recipes, but the base recipe was by Paula Deen.  I only used a cream cheese frosting instead.  They were delicious!  Not the healthiest way to start off the new year, but definately a yummy one! 
Princess and I played Barbies for a while.  I love watching all of their imaginations when they play.  After Barbies they all wanted to play dress up.  The baby insisted that I dress up in a hulk mask.  I obliged and included that picture even if it is scary ;)  Happy New Year!

New Years 2013!

This year our new years plans got changed due to the stomach bug lingering.  Instead, we just hung out as our own little family of 5. All the kids stayed up until midnight , even Brendan made it! We counted down together, banged pots and pans and bowls inside and outside of  and screamed happy new year as loud as we could!  The kids had sparkling grape juice in real grown up glasses and toasted to a new year!
By the way, in the pictures Aidan is wearing a shirt we found in all the fabric my late grandma gave me. He feels special knowing it came from his great grandma and is something that she made.


With the start of a new year comes the question, "what are your resolutions?"  I guess one of my resolutions is to keep up with this blog.  I have started and stopped it so many times, but I really would love to have a nice place to keep track of everything we do so my kids can see it when they are older.  I think I always felt pressure to make it just right and perfect so I just figured it was easier not to do it at all!  This year I really want to make more memories with my husband and children and I am going to use this blog as a way to keep it all :)  Feel free to follow along and join our adventures!