Thursday, July 16, 2009

Macaroni Monster

Now, this is what I call professional eating! Jaden is getting to be pretty talented with his spoon. I guess he's getting CLOSE to that 18 month age the doctor said he would be able to start doing this by.

Our New Favorite Place to Play

Since it's SO hot here in the desert if you don't get up and get to the park by about 9am, there is no point in going. Unless of course you want to roast, fry, or sizzle your bottom on the slide.

So, we discovered the indoor park at the mall. Nice, fun, other kids, WAY cleaner than the McDonald's play places. All in all, a good find.

Jaden has taken to climbing on ANYTHING he can figure out how to get up onto.
The car is still one of his favorite attractions.

This one is new this week. I was across the play area when suddenly I saw him on top of this 3 foot tall, no sided thing. I freaked out thinking WHO PUT MY BABY UP THERE!!!!! Then, watched in awe as he slid down and climbed right back up as if it was nothing. This video doesn't show his best/quickest scaling of the "building" but, know, he did this about 50 times the first day he figured out how. He was GOOD and tired by the time we went home! :-)

All I can say is....."Where did my BABY go?

He's not supposed to be able to do that already!!!!!!!

Ridin' in Style

Jaden discovered that it is really fun to RIDE Oma's walker. I don't know how I'll keep him away from it now! :-)

Beans and Blueberries

No, not a new recipe. Just a good combo for a crazy little boy.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Long Lost Cousin

Well...not really...but we did figure out that it had been 14 years since we had seen each other. For me and cousins....that's LONG time!

My cousin Becky and her husband Nate are moving westward and happened to be driving through our town. We got to have some dinner together and meet each other's kiddos (her two older girls were staying with their grandma and grandpa until they get settled in their new home).

You'd think not having seen each other for 14 years would kinda make you strangers. But, I think that's one of the joys of family - no matter how long it's been it's still a JOY to be together. I just wish they could have been here longer. I guess we both know what it's like to live FAR from family so, just seeing a familiar face and having the bond of family love is comforting.


This week was "Fiesta" VBS at our church. J just hung out with me as I helped with music but he had a TON of fun being around other kids and having LOTS of time to dance and shake the maracas! He's not a fan of stickers though. He only wants to take them off.
Tamborines are pretty cool too....and apparently they make good necklaces.

On the last day we had a big water balloon fight. Since we weren't having the regular music time with each class I had to help fill the water balloons. J kept wanting to play with them, which was fine, until he was breaking them about as fast as we were filling them. So, I asked a few mariachi friends if they would watch him while I was working. They were thrilled and soon came asking if I had a camera on me. I guess, in addition to getting to eat jelly beans (lucky boy - none of that candy stuff from mommy!) he got a new hair do!

Surprisingly....pretty darn cute! (Now I might say differently if he attempts this as a 14 year old!)

The teachers and helpers.
And all the beautiful kiddos

Fourth of July

I was surprised to find out (that morning) that there IS actually a 4th of July Parade here. I was so happy because I thought J would relaly enjoy it! Grandpa and Grandma H had a bit of free time in the morning so they went with J and I. Daddy was busy working on an IRS 990 form before leaving for school/conferences/and mariachi tour.

J got a good view of the action from Grandpa's shoulders.

He wasn't too sure about Uncle Sam but was a good sport anyway.

The cars were the best part of the parade - those - and the MONSTER trucks!
Luz helped mommy shampoo the carpet in the afternoon and joing us for dinner and fireworks.
(note to all other moms & dads - apparently there is a possible but unproven link between carpet shampooing and a serious and often fatal disease in children under 5 called Kawasaki disease. We found out about this AFTER shampooing 3 rooms so, we decided to err on the side of caution. We spent the night at G&G H's house and redid the floors 4 times with a water rinse the next day just in case. That made for LOTS of work and REALLY sore muscles but....REALLY clean floors!)

J, all ready to watch the fireworks - through his eyelids.

But, when the booming started we got him to wake up and he was enthralled. He was even pointing and signed MORE every time there was a pause.

All in all.....a little too much work took place to really feel like a holiday but we were able to celebrate our nation's independence and have some fun along with all the work! Now I just have to figure out when to get the floors in the OTHER two rooms done!

Saturday, July 11, 2009


And that my friends, completes my catching up from June.

July to come - Hallelujah only 11 days behind!!! :-)

Spicy Gazpacho and Green Enchilada Suiza Mexican Lasagna

So, I (as often as I get around to it) participate in a monthly blog challenge to try new recipies. There is a theme for each month. This summer throughout June July and August the challenges are 1) ice cream, 2) cold soup, 3) something to do with grilling - - - I think a new kind of burger. So far, I'm only on one...but hopefully we'll make it the rest of the way before the end of August.

I've always been interested in trying Gazpacho (chilled tomato soup) but pretty skeptical because I'm not really a tomato fan. Okay, but, SERIOUSLY, this Gazpacho could NOT be any easier. And, even though I was skeptical, I was impressed. And, I was told BY A CHEF that this was REALLY GOOD Gazpacho! Bonus!


2 med tomatoes chopped
1 small cucumber chopped
1 small onion chopped
½ green pepper chopped
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1 Tbs wine vinegar
1-2 dashes red pepper sauce
¼ tsp salt
24 oz spicy hot vegetable juice chilled

Mix ingredients, cover, refrigerate

Don't forget the crucial step of entertaining the munchkin (these are new to our refrigerator!)

Served with Mango Margarita Slush

And Green Enchilada Suiza Mexican Lasagna (good, but not as good as the green chicken enchiladas I made here, so I won't be repeating this one)

Of course, these challenges usually get shared because, who wants to eat the same thing for days and days and days in a row. Plus, I lost a bet to Chris and Erin about 3 months ago and owed them dinner. Our next bet is the American League vs. the National League on the 15th. I hope I win!

Birthday party fun

M, our goddaughter just had her 1st birthday so, we went to a great party at her house! J didn't quite get the hitting the pinata thing, but he had a good time anyway! The birhtday girl dancing
fun with bubbles

make a wish!

Not pictured....the jumping balloon that did a good job, after 1 1/2 hours of jumping, of tiring J out for a decent night's sleep!

First Clowns

A servant event team from Hastings, MN was around and part of their group did a clown ministry outreach for kids at our church. It was pretty cute! J wasn't too sure what to think of them but since they came running out with kazoos buzzing he was pretty interested.
His favorite part were the balloon animals afteward though.

This is our friend "Big M" with his son. It our and "Big M's" prayer that our sons grow up together loving the Lord with all their hearts. Praise God! The best part is, J and A do play together pretty well. J doesn't even seem to mind when A takes his toys away. I guess J is just freaked out by little girls....he doesn't seem to play as well with them (I guess that's not ALL bad! ;-) Deflated balloons are fun too!

All in all, definitely a nice afternoon diversion on a hot day! I wish there were more kid friendly activities going on in these parts! (or at least ones that I know about!)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Father's Day

Even though we had been gone (out of our house) a lot lately J decided that Daddy needed a camping trip for Father's Day. So....that's just what he got him (with mommy's help of course!)

It was supposed to be a surprise but I couldn't figure out how to make sure there were no scheduling/homework conflicts that would make the surprise....stressful.

We left on Sunday after lunch with family and headed up to the mountains.

J sporting his new t-shirt and Daddy wearing his from last year (why were all the Father's shirts this year so DUMB????)

J quickly decided that he wanted to do everything that mommy and daddy did in this new environment. Cooking rocks while sitting in the dirt is way more fun that pretend cooking in the kitchen.

Hmm...what's this? Note to all mom campers.....CAUTION: don't let the kiddos get too close enless you want black babies. Soot/dirt left on campsite grills does NOT come off with water, camp dish soap, or baby wipes.

J decided that he wanted to sit in the chair (we didn't bring his 'cuase it doesn't fold up and the car was PACKED).

Doing Devotions and relaxing J decided that the dog leashes were pretty fun

And I think Jack is his new best friend

I'm not sure yet if Jack agrees though....

After a long morning in the great outdoors the little guy was pooped. It was too hot in the tent so we made him a nice little bed in the shade.

Then we went on a hike for firewood. Have I mentioned lately that I really LOVE these two guys!?!?

Cooking again. Sheer glee at 24+ hours outside on this face I tell ya!

We almost forgot to take a picture by our tent

J had to help Daddy roll up and smooth the tent just so

What a wonderful escape. We had been worried about how J would sleep in the tent but he did great. The campsite we found only had 3 sites and was so quiet. A BEAUTIFUL escape. WE decided that we should have a monthly campout. HA....First I'll shoot for beating our "once a year" trend. The last time we went camping was Sept. 2007.