Monday, January 31, 2011

This might make you hungry!!

I enjoy cooking, but sometimes I get in the rut of fixing the same old things over and over again.  This week, I was in the mood to try many different meals.  Here are just some of the new things made last week.....

A deep-dish pizza.  This was the first time using the big cast iron skillet Duane gave me for Christmas for making a pizza.  It was yummy!!  The best was gluten-free!!!  I could eat it with no guilt or ill effects. :)
 I LOVE pineapples and was absolutely thrilled to pieces when Kroger had them on sale for just $1 each!  I snagged 3 and we made.....
 smoothies with pineapple chunks.  Samuel helped me out....
 You NEVER want the lid to fly off an 'in-motion' blender!!!
 Drinking the leftovers straight from the pitcher!! :) 
 Samuel made up some s'mores on his day off from school.  His grandparents came him a s'more making gift bag as one of his b-day gifts.
 Parmesan-Herb Twists
These are all in the freezer awaiting meals to go with them.
 Cinnamon-Sugar Twists
These were a BIG hit with the kids.
 Callie showing them off.
 Donut making on Sunday afternoon.
 The boys helping decorate the chocolate-glazed ones.
 All the donuts ready to go to church for after service fellowship.
 These were so much fun to make and oh so easy.
 Powdered-sugar donuts are always so pretty!!
My children have informed me that we are NEVER buying store-bought donuts again!!!  My son, Simon, wants me to teach him how to make them so he can make them for his wife one day if she doesn't know how to!!  I thought that was funny but sweet. :)  Simon does love to help out in the kitchen.
 A little girl, just up from her afternoon nap, enjoys a still-warm fresh donut.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A dress fit for a Princess!!!

I was fortunate enough to be a tester for a new pattern coming out from Katydid Creations LLC.  Yesterday, we rummaged through the clearance fabric at Jo-Ann's and found this beautiful princess fabric at 50% off the 50% off sale price!!  Can't beat a bargain like that.  So, $10 and a few hours later, this dress came off the sewing table.  Callie was dancing with glee when she FINALLY got to put it on!!
I don't even want to go into how many yards the bottom ruffle of this dress is!!!!
 Can you tell she LOVES it?
 A view from the back.
 ....from the side....
 A silly pose.
 And the twirling begins.....

 This was a super-fun and rewarding dress to sew for Callie today.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Party, 4 Pastors and some Pizza!

 A cake was baked and decorated....
balloons and streamers were hung in anticipation....
of a special 6 year olds birthday party!!!!
 Gifts were unwrapped.....

 The long-awaited gift from his BIG brothers, Seth and Simon.....a Ben 10 ship.....was an ENORMOUS hit!!!
 Opening up a gift from one of the four 'pastors' Samuel invited.
~Hot Wheel car and candy~
 Opening up cards from relatives and friends.
 Card and money from another pastor.
 Awwww....he got a $1!!!!!  That made his day!!!!
 The birthday boy with his siblings....
 the honored guests....
more guests....Daddy, Youth Pastor, Music Pastor, Children's Pastor & Music Pastor's wife.
I guess this is a good time to explain why all the pastor's were at a 6 year old's b-day party.  Why because he invited them!!!  All by himself.  I was told after church last Sunday, that Samuel was going around inviting people to his party.  He had counted up all the chairs we had and had figured out exactly how many were left for guests.  It was too cute.  I watched from a distance as he went around to all the Pastor's and invited them to share in his special day!!!  They all came and enjoyed pizza, cake & ice cream with Samuel.  He answered the door when each guest arrived and enthusiastically welcomed them to his party.  (Oh, and I should mention that I found out he told everyone they could bring a card with either a $1 or $10 bill inside!!!  I died laughing when I heard that.   Only a cute little 6 year old could get away with that!)
 The birthday boy with his cake and candle. 
 Blowin' out that candle!!!
Everyone singing "Happy Birthday".  Watch for the eye-roll!!!!
 Samuel's cool Ben 10 ship.
 The party guests get attacked!!!
 Boys will be boys....
 We worked hard today!!!
 The birthday boy with his gifts from Daddy and Mommy.  A turtle to sleep with(that's exactly what he wanted) and a Bible Storybook.  And, I LOVE this book and the cd's.  We listened to 2 stories last night and they were absolutely captivating!!!  The kid's were begging for another!

He's a bit tired now....
 One last smile before bedtime...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Remembering....a year ago

 Today was a remembering of what happened a year ago.  Here are a few disjointed thoughts/feelings from that time.

One year ago tonight, I was in a helicopter with my eldest son being life-flighted to another hospital.  I was scared.  Numb.  Praying.  Full of questions.  You see, just a few hours before, I was mixing up cookies and cooking candy.  Life was good.  The boys were out sledding with daddy.  Callie and I were enjoying the quietness of a girls-only night!!  30 minutes later, a phone changed all that.  Coats and shoes were thrown on.  I ran out into the dark and snowy night waiting for a ride to the hospital.  I knew nothing other than my oldest son was hurt.  At the hospital, sights and sounds awaited me like I've never experienced before.  I barely recognized the boy laying on the table in the emergency room.  It was evident that they were lifeflighting him immediately.  I insisted on going with him.  Miraculously, I was allowed.  (I was told later that is a rarity.)  The 15 minute flight seemed like it took hours.  I still didn't know what was wrong with our son.  They had him paralyzed and intubated.  I counted and prayed in between breaths.  At times it seemed as if they had stopped breathing for him and I wondered if he was gone.  I was scared!!  I thought of all the times I'd been short or inpatient with him.  I wondered if I would ever get a chance to be his mommy again.  I prayed some more.  Others were praying.  We arrived.  A blanket was wrapped around me and a life flight bear was thrust into my hands.  I'll not forget that long walk from the helicopter pad into the brightly lit hallways of the hospital.  There were lines of people just standing.  Watching.  Waiting.  What were they thinking?  Did they know about our son arriving?  These were just some of the thoughts that flashed through my brain.  In the emergency room, Seth was immediately surrounded by teams of doctors, nurses, technicians.  At one point I counted over a dozen people surrounding him.  A white board was placed close to where I was standing.  It had 12 year old boy written on it.  My first thought was, his name is Seth and he's only 11!  A man slipped in the room and handed me glass of water.  He was the chaplain.  I'd never really thought about what a chaplain's role in a hospital was until then.  You see, my mom is a chaplain one day a week in a hospital.  Was this what she does.  Sees.  How does one go to work day in and day out and be around things like this?  I was grateful, that he had came to work that night.  That he was there.  I did not know him or even remember his name now, but I thank God for sending him my way.  I was all alone at that time.  I was shown to a waiting room.  I made a few phone calls.  More prayers went up from others as they found out.  I'm so grateful for God's people that pray.  Anytime.  All the time.  For people they don't even know.  It makes a difference. 
A long night was ahead.  Our pastor drove up with my husband.  I was glad he came.  He prayed with us.  Listened to us.  We found out that Seth had fractured his cheekbone, broken his lower jawbone and had some slight bleeding on the brain.  They couldn't evaluate other injuries until they brought him out of the medically induced coma.  They couldn't tell us if he would be the same Seth when he woke up.  But then again, are any of us the same after a crisis like this?  Not much sleep was to be had on the hard, cold hospital chairs in Seth's room.  We lay there listening to the machine breathing for Seth.  Listening to the monitors beep.  Holding him down when he fought to get up.  At one point it took 5 of us to get him back down.  That was heart-breaking.  Hours and hours later.....they FINALLY took out his breathing tube.  He was still very out of it.  Once a doctor okayed his neck, the neck brace came off.  He seemed much happier then.  Then it was down to surgery.  They were able to pop the jawbone very easily into place.  Then his mouth had to be wired shut.  Finally 2 days after he arrived in the hospital we were heading home.  It was wonderful to be back home!!!  But that brought along a whole new set of challenges.  For instance, Seth had to learn how to eat with a syringe.  Someone had brought us a wonderful Sunday meal of lasagna and all the side dishes.  We decided to puree lasagna.  So, NOT a good idea!!!  The syringe exploded and I ended up wearing more lasagna then Seth had in his mouth!!!  Then, Seth had to learn how to communicate with his mouth wired shut.  That was frustrating for all around at first.  We gradually got used to it and before he got his wires off, he was quit fluent at the 'wired shut' language!!!  I could write for hours more of the many experiences we had, but need to get on with our happy celebration evening part of the blog post. :)  I do want to say I'm so VERY grateful to all those that brought in food for us, gifts for Seth, cards and the many, MANY prayers that went up for our family.  It meant so much to us then and still does now. 

~A Celebration of being Alive and the Power of Prayer~

God works in mysterious ways.....He sent a big snow storm into town yesterday and church was cancelled tonight.  We were able to enjoy a relaxing evening together as a family.  It started with a giant cookie pie.  Baked in my Christmas present.  An ENORMOUS cast iron skillet.  This thing has been well-used already in the very short time I've had it!!!
 Fresh from the oven......can you smell it?
 ~Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie A la mode~
 Followed by a rousing game of Lego World Explorer.  This was a fun and LOUD game.  You should've saw/heard us all cheering our little Lego cars on!!!  This was a Christmas gift to the kids from us and the first time playing it.
 Samuel wanted his picture taken with the game.
 Guess who the winner was?  Callie!!!!!  Can you tell she's just a little excited!!!
 He didn't look this good a year ago!  We thank God for sparing his life.  I'm excited to see what God has planned for him in the future. 
 Not to be outdone by his brother getting a picture taken with his life flight bear....Simon insisted on a picture with his stuffed turtle, Pookie. 
After the game, the kids snuggled in blankets on the couch and we watched a Christmas movie together.  They got to bed much later than usual (in fact, one little boy fell asleep on the couch), but we all enjoyed our family night together.  Evenings where we all can truly relax, have been few and far between lately.