Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Snack for the Summertime!

I thought I would share a really good snack idea. It's healthy with the exception of the M&Ms. :) There are a lot of people out there who can put together various ingredients and get a tremendous snack or meal in return. I am always in fear that if I do that then I will end up with GUNK! Gunk is what you end up with on Webkinz if your ingredients don't mix well. Anyway...I found this in "Taste of Home" June/July 08. It makes a GINORMOUS batch. Since I don't have a bowl that big I halved it instead. It still took the largest bowl I had. I do realize the temptation for some children to just eat the M&Ms and leave the rest. So, tailor it to your needs, likes/dislikes, etc. I'm sitting here eating a small serving myself. :)


Motoring Munchies
1 pkg. (18 oz.) granola without raisins
1 can (17 oz.) mixed nuts
1 pkg. (15 oz.) raisins
1 pkg. (14 oz.) milk chocolate M&Ms
1 pkg. (14 oz.) peanut M&Ms
1 pkg. (12.25 oz.) Honey-Nut Cheerios
1 pkg. (8.9 oz.) Cheerios

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Store in a covered container or large resealable plastic bags. Yields: 4 1/2 quarts

**If anyone reading this has another great snack idea, please feel free to comment. I can use all the ideas I can get!!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Family Retreat

We don't have any plans for Memorial Day Weekend, but last weekend we enjoyed a family retreat with 7 other families from our church. We drove from Gentry to Jasper on Friday. The first picture our state lovingly refers to as the Arkansas Grand Canyon. Yes, a far cry from the real thing I know, but beautiful none the less.

The third picture is the retreat center we all stayed in. It has 8 rooms all with their own bathrooms as well as a large living area, kitchen, and dining areas. It was a beautiful weekend. We traveled with two other families on Friday. The rest of the families arrived in the evening. We enjoyed time around the campfire, homemade ice cream, and fellowshipping together. Saturday a few families went canoeing on the Buffalo River, and a couple of other families went fishing. Those of us with smaller children stayed at the cabin and just relaxed. On Sunday we checked out of the lodge and headed to Lost Valley for a small church service, picnic, and hiking. The last picture is of Andy and Mel during the praise and worship time. After the picnic Andy carried Mel in that front pack on the ENTIRE hiking trip. I'll have pictures of that later. Despite our children getting sick while we were there we had a great time. Anne and Naomi had a lot of fun playing with the other kids. I know it's something we'd sign up for next year if they continue to make it an annual event.
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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

She's getting SO BIG!!

I FOUND MY CAMERA!!! So here are a couple of pictures of Melanie taken today. She was playing happily in her activity center while I was doing dishes this morning. Naomi put her princess crown on her, and I couldn't resist. :)

This is Melanie this afternoon after our trip to Fayetteville. Today was my hair appt., which Melanie screamed through the last half of. I still don't know why. One minute she was happy. The next minute I guess she'd had enough. I couldn't even get her to calm down. She finally did when we got to the van--Ugh! Thankfully she was fine the rest of the day. We ate lunch at Taco Bell. I tried their "fresco" menu--not bad. Then off to the mall to walk and look around. Next was Wal-Mart and a final stop at Sam's--Whew!
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Monday, May 12, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!!

Yes, I realize it's the day after, but it was quite busy around here this Mother's Day weekend. It started Thursday evening with Andy taking me out to eat and to a movie. A new Texas Land and Cattle restaurant opened at the Promenade mall so we tried it out. It was pretty good. Then we watched "Drillbit Taylor" afterwards. Our babysitter made it through the night with the three girls. The only challenge was when Melanie just started screaming around 8:30pm. Our sitter called me afraid that she had done something wrong, but I assured her otherwise. Mel is such a mommy's girl. She was sleepy and wanting me. Melanie did fall asleep shortly after the phone call and stayed asleep until we returned home. Lucky for the sitter. :)

Friday was a fairly normal day. Melanie had her six month check up. She now weighs in at 18 lbs. 10 oz. and is 28 inches long!! A healthy girl indeed. She has two bottom front teeth in as well. Ahhh, the joys of teething. :) Next, we met Andy at La Hacienda for lunch. Then he decided to take Anne with him for the afternoon while Naomi, Melanie, and I went grocery shopping. It was nice to shop with just two instead of three tagging along. :)

We took the girls and our niece, Aspen, to the Shriner's Circus on Saturday. Coye, Aspen's dad, was given free tickets and passed them along to us. We went to the afternoon show and the girls absolutely loved it!!! Melanie got fussy because of the noise so I and Andy took turns sitting with her elsewhere so that the noise was minimal. Then we had dinner at NWA's famous AQ Chicken House. It was there we decided to go to the drive-in movie theatre. Little did we know about the storm that was brewing outside. We no sooner got back in the van when the skies opened up and poured rain, hail, and gusty winds. Thankfully we didn't see any tornadoes, and it really cleared up nicely. We went to Sam's club to get a couple of lawnchairs and other things before going to the drive-in. We still had quite a bit of time to kill so we headed to Shake's Frozen Custard for dessert--a favorite of mine and Andy's. :) Shortly after arriving at the drive-in I guess Anne's stomach had more than it could handle because she threw up IN THE VAN!!!! We thought the evening was over for us, and we would have to head home. Thankfully the people who ran the theatre were very nice. They gave me a brand new role of paper towels, trashbag, and cleaner to clean up Anne's mess. Needless to say, Anne felt better after that ordeal. :) We stayed to watch both movies, "Fool's Gold" and "Bucket List." Both were very good. By the time we were all home and in bed it was about 2am!

Sunday, Mother's Day, we attended church. Then my family came to our house for grilled hot dogs, hamburgers, and homemade strawberry pies!! After lunch Mom, Stephanie, Courtney, and I went to Sam's and Wal-Mart to look at landscaping items/ideas. Sunday was a much calmer day then the previous ones. :) The day ended on a relaxing note which is always good.

Now today we begin the last week of the girls' homeschool!! Yeah! This first year of homeschooling has had it's ups and downs as most first years do. Will we continue? Yes! I'm looking forward to making next year a better year. Will I continue to use the Sonlight curriculum? Right now I'm still planning to mainly because of it's strong literature content, but I am researching some other options. Once we're done with this current year I plan to dive into researching other curriculum possibilities. The only other option that I'm still playing with is putting the girls in a private Christian school. I have really missed teaching, and the school that I'm looking into is a really good one. Of course the only way we can afford it is if I work there. So, I'm praying about it, and will possibly call them about a couple of the positions they have available. I have a peace about it because the girls would still get the Christian education we desire for them to have, and I could continue to fulfill a ministry of teaching students. If I don't get hired, then we will continue to home school the girls. They will still get the Christian education, and I'm still teaching students. :) It's a win/win no matter which way it goes. :) I like those kinds of odds. :)

Sorry there aren't any pictures. My camera is currently MIA. I have no idea where it is, which is really frustrating!! I've got to find it over the next four days, though, because we are going on a family retreat with other families in our church this next weekend! Hopefully it will turn up soon!

Happy Mother's Day to all!