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Archive for December, 2009

Menu Plan Monday ~ December 21-27

Thoughtfully penned on December 21st, 2009 and generally concerning In the kitchen, Menu Planning

It’s been a couple of weeks since I posted a menu plan (or much of anything for that matter), but here we go again…

Monday – Paula Deen’s chicken and rice casserole, rolls

Tuesday – casserole leftovers

Wednesday – chili, chips, and cheese

Thursday – pizza (our Christmas Eve tradition)

Friday – breakfast: cinnamon rolls / lunch: Christmas meal** / dinner (if necessary): meatball stew

Saturday – breakfast: breakfast casserole / lunch: Christmas leftovers / dinner: eat out or fend

Sunday – lunch: eat out / dinner: meatball subs, fries

**Christmas meal: ham, rolls, pineapple casserole, homemade mac & cheese, green bean casserole, knock-off cranberry bliss bars, Boston cream cake, apple orchard punch, tea

I’ll also be cooking/baking a couple batches of chex mix, a double batch of pumpkin scones, and cinnamon rolls this week. It’s going to be a busy week, but we’ll eat well! :-)

Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas!

For menu plans and meal ideas visit Menu Plan Monday at orgjunkie.com

A few words from Little

Thoughtfully penned on December 16th, 2009 and generally concerning E

A couple weeks ago Little was on quite a roll with her funny comments. Here are a few that I’ve been meaning to get written down:

~ “Mommy, when baby girl is born you’ll have a little tummy again!” [yeah, i hope so :-)]

~ We were playing “trip” and I was supposed to travel to her house in the living room. When I came into the living room there were toys, cups, blankets, etc strewn all over the place. I said, “How does this house get so messy?” She replied (with a straight face), “I don’t know. I never met you before.”

~ And last, but not least, we were watching the finale of The Biggest Loser last week and Little was in here with us during the last few minutes before bed time. They were showing the “before” pictures of the contestants and Little said, “Why do some daddies have pull b00bies?” I’m not sure what the pull part means, but Matt and I both just busted out laughing.

Big boy bed for Boo, take 1

Thoughtfully penned on December 7th, 2009 and generally concerning J

With the baby girl set to arrive in the next 5 weeks (give or take), we are finally starting to prepare for her arrival.

This weekend we borrowed a toddler bed for Boo from my best friend and set about transitioning rooms for the older two kids (Boo and Little will be sharing a room for now). Last night Matt moved all the furniture around – moving the crib and changing table out of Boo’s room into what used to be Little’s room (and will now be baby girl’s room) and Little’s bed into Boo’s room. We got the toddler bed all set up and ready, and then waited for bed time.

For the record, Little is absolutely thrilled to be sharing a room with Boo. In fact, both of the kids were bouncing around like rubber balls while Matt was moving furniture.

At bed time Matt took Boo into his room, piled all of his “bees” (blankets, lovey, and monkey) into his big boy bed, and put tucked him in. As soon as Matt left the room Boo was out of bed and at the door crying. For about 30 minutes, they repeated the steps of their dance. When it was time for Little to go to bed (we started early with Boo knowing it would probably take a while) we thought maybe he would do better having her in the room with him. Nope.

He stayed in his bed now but was crying like he’d lost his best friend. After 20 minutes or so of listening to him cry and Little do her best to soothe him (she was so sweet!), we broke down and set up the pack ‘n play. They continued to “chat” for another 30 minutes or so until they both finally settled down and went to sleep. We decided to try again with Boo at nap time today.

So here I sit, during what is supposed to be nap time, listening to Boo cry from the pack ‘n play in baby girl’s room. I did get him to sleep in his bed – after putting him back in bed 3 or 4 times and then listening to him cry for a half hour or so – which was an accomplishment, but it was short lived. After he’d been asleep about an hour I heard him whimpering and then heard a thud followed by crying. When I went in the room Boo was standing beside his bed disoriented and crying. I quickly whisked him and his bees out of the room since Little was sleeping in there, and set up the pack ‘n play hoping he would go back to sleep. Nope.

Looks like this might take a while.

Here’s hoping that tonight goes better!

Happy December!

Thoughtfully penned on December 1st, 2009 and generally concerning Christmas Time, God's at Work in My Life

This morning Matt asked me if I realized that this past Sunday was the first Sunday of Advent and it was at that moment that I realized that December is upon us. Really, where has the year gone? I know for me, the last few weeks have passed in a haze of illness (for all four of us), Thanksgiving prep and travel, and thinking oh my goodness this baby is coming soon. So here I sit on the first day of December with nothing planned or prepared for our Advent/Christmas traditions that we’ve hoped to start for the last couple of years (nah, I’m not a procrastinator!).

This morning in the time before our play date I did some searching online and planning in my head and decided that I will make our Advent calendar, we will read through the nativity story in Luke multiple times, we will have Advent candles (don’t know yet whether we’ll have a “wreath” or just the candles), and that we’ll do several Christmas themed activities as a family throughout the month.

I’m trying not to be overly ambitious this year since the wee babe is scheduled to make her appearance sometime in the next 5ish weeks, but I do want to make it a joyous and festive time for our family. So, here is our Advent/Christmas season plan (hopefully it will all play out)…

~Advent Calendar – Since I’m making it, it will be sweet and simple, with emphasis on the simple. Something like this is what I have in mind.


I will, however, rely on printed scrapbook paper and a cute paper punch to create the ornaments.

~The Nativity story – I would like to read through the story every evening, but since our children are so young we will probably have to break it up into a few segments over the course of several nights. I do want to read through it multiple times, though, for the sake of repetition (especially with Little).

~Advent candles/wreath – our Advent candles aren’t the right colors (the store I visited didn’t have any purple candles), but we’ll go with what we have. We will light them on the remaining three Sundays preceding Christmas and will catch up the first week’s candle this coming Sunday.

~Christmas themed activities – this weekend (hopefully) we will put up the Christmas tree and decorate the house, next weekend we will attend a community event called Alpine Village at one of the local churches, and the weekend before Christmas we will drive around to view Christmas lights and make a stop for cocoa/coffee. We also have Christmas cookies to bake, goodies to make for gifts, and will probably have a Christmas get together with friends. And, of course, we plan to attend the Christmas Eve service at our church.

Matt and I hope to teach our children that the Christmas season is more than gifts and Santa and reindeer and spending money; that it is about anticipating and celebrating Christ’s birth, about blessing others from the bounty that God has given us, and about spending time with people you love.

What are your favorite family Advent/Christmas traditions?