Sunday, December 31, 2006

New Years Eve

The NH Ciolinos are spending a quiet New Years Eve at home this year. We finally got a little snow yesterday. About 3 inches. The girls couldn't wait to get out and play in it. It is supposed to rain tomorrow and it will all melt probably and they are predicting mid 40s later in the week! Crazy weather even for New England.
Yesterday Dom and I dropped the girls off at Nonna's and went out to lunch at the Macaroni Grill. Dom got a gift certificate from a co-worker and the closest one to us is in Reading, Ma. convenietly located near Nonna's. Excellent Italian food! Then we hit the Burlington mall and I spent some Christmas money at Bath and Body works and Cracker Barrel. Also a trip into the Lego store to get Becca a birthday gift. That is our next big event, planning Becca's birthday party. She wants a Willy Wonka themed party so I will be putting my creativity to the test on this one! Luckily I am always up for a creative challenge!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Best Christmas ever!

So it has been declared by Becca. This made me feel good considering health wise I was feeling not so great and neither was Kenzie. Mackenzie did well first thing in the morning, getting caught up in all the excitement of opening gifts but by noon she was starting to crash and went up to her room for a nap. I was wishing I could join her. I am so lucky to have such an awesome husband who can cook and was in charge of the meal this Christmas because I really was not up for cooking. Dom did an excellent job and everyone seemed happy with the meal. I am also thankful to my mom and mother-in-law who did the dishes after the meal because our dishwasher is broken.
The girls were spoiled by everyone and were happy with everything they got. Becca's favorite gift was a littlest pet shop digital pet that I could hardly drag her away from. Kenzie bounced around from toy to toy so it was hard to tell if there was one favorite. I didn't really take too many pictures which proves how sick I felt!
I still am not feeling 100% but better than I have for a week. Today is the first day that Kenzie has really perked up which is a relief, I was ready to call the doctor if she didn't seem any better today.
Hope that everyone's holiday's were happy!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Technical Difficulties

For some reason people have been unable to post comments lately. I don't know why but it seems to be fixed I hope! Thanks to those of you who let me know that you were reading even though you couldn't post comments. I have it set so that I see the comments before they are published to cut down on spam so your comments won't be visible right away.
It's nice to hear from you guys!
With Christmas right around the corner, there will probably be very little posting until after Christmas. I have also come down with a mega-cold, Kenzie has too unfortunately. I was doing pretty good fighting it but today has been tough. I am hoping to get some rest so I can be healthy for Christmas.
Take care everyone and have a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

More Christmas stuff

Here are a couple more Christmas projects. The first is a candy dish made from a clay pot, saucer and glass bowl to look like a gumball machine. I've made these for Becca's teachers and for a co-worker of Dom's known as "the candy man" to the girls because he always has candy on his desk. Dom is always grabbing a couple of treats to bring home to the girls."The candy man" sent home a 5lb bag of candy to the girls for Christmas. They will probably be eating it until next Christmas.
The second is a Santa cake I made for Dom to take to work and I also made a few little elves for the girls. This cake was really simple and fun to make. It is just an upside down heart!
I have also included a few pics of the girls graham cracker houses that they made. I helped put the houses together but the girls did all the decorating themselves. I think they came out great! Rebecca made the little one and Kenzie made the bigger one.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Mom the KUS guy is here again!

'Who is the KUS guy? and why is he here? Not just here, but here again?' I ask myself. This is of course being yelled through the closed bathroom door as I try to get a little privacy. Now it's not just my kids interrupting me but the KUS guy, whoever he is.
"Who's here?" I ask Kenzie who is the one doing the yelling.
"The KUS guy. You know the package guy."
"Oh you mean the UPS guy." I reply finally getting it.
The UPS guy is of course peeling out of the end of the driveway by the time I reach the door. Becca runs to see who the packages are for and is very disappointed that they are all addressed to me. "Why don't we get anything?"she demands pouting.
"You'll get your gifts on Christmas." I reassure her.
"But I want it Now!" I cringe. She sounds exactly like Veruca Salt in Willy Wonka. You know the spoiled brat.

Time for a little lesson in the joy of giving and not just recieving I think. Wish me luck.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Your call is important to us.....

Blah, blah, blah..okay time for a vent. I got home today and had a message on my machine asking me to call a bank that we have a loan with. No biggie I think cause I sent the payment last week, so I call and push 14 buttons and pray that the moon and the stars are in the correct alignment and I got the right combination to connect me with a real person. It's my lucky day. Jack answers the phone and asks if he can help me. I explain the phone message that states any associate can assist me.
Jack:"Who did you speak with?"
Me: "No one, Someone left a message."
Jack: "Right, who left the message?"
Me: "Uh, a lady with a really bad cold, Didi maybe? It was really hard to
understand her on the message."
I give Jack my account info and he puts me back on hold where I get to listen to Christmas Carols. Jack comes back in the middle of 'A White Christmas".
"I'm not sure why someone called you. You haven't paid for December yet.
Let me transfer you to collections."
Me: "I sent the check and its' not even late for another four days."
Too late. I am already on hold and this time no music. Only an annoying automated voice that comes on every thirty seconds to remind me how important my call is and to please hold for the next available associate. Well I don't feel very important. I didn't get any music. I contemplate telling them this when finally, I get the next available associate and explain everything all over again, including account number.
Associate: "What number were you asked to call?"
I give her the number.
Associate: "that's not this number, maybe you should call that number."
Me: "I did call that number and they transfered me to you."
Associate:" I don't know why someone called. We haven't recieved your December
payment yet. Maybe that's why."
Me: "I sent it out last week and it isn't even considered late for another 4 days.
It's probably sitting in the accounting office right now."
Associate: "Would you like me to transfer you to accounting?"
Me:"No! No thank you. Thanks for your uh help."

15 minutes of my life wasted. How annoying is that!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

More unusually warm weather

It was 50 degrees today. The kids had a 'picnic' snack outside today when Becca got home from School. As you can see they were only slightly annoyed by the appearance of the
'mamarazzi'. I am alway sticking a camera in their cute little faces. This is a self-proclaimed nickname as I got sick of being called "the crazy camera lady". Yes, I have been known to carry around several camera's at once, you know digital, video etc... I can't be the only one can I??

ABC's of our Christmas

Got this idea off the web. Plan to do a scrapbook out of it.

Advent calendar
Baking lots of cookies
Christmas Carols
Decorating and Deenie the elf
Family & Friends
Hosting Christmas day
Internet shopping
Jesus-the reason for the season
Kisses -hershey's cordial creme- my favorite!
Love for family and friends
Mackenzie enjoying the Magic of the season
Nativity scene -adding a new piece each year
Ornaments-the girls picking a new one each year
Pile of catalogs in the mail each day
Quiet moments few and far between
Rebecca Reading holiday stories
Santa, of course!
Train around the Tree
Under the tree with all the gifts
Videos of our favorite holiday movies
White Christmas-(ususally!)
XXXX's & OOOO's to family
Yummy treats to eat
Zonked at the end of it all!

How about a list from my fellow bloggers????????

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Potty humor

If you are easily offended just skip this post. I came across this song and it made me giggle. Call me immature but sometimes potty humor is funny. The link is for a song called 'I farted on Santa's lap.'


Monday, December 11, 2006

On the go

We had a busy weekend but I think things are going to settle down a little before Christmas, Of course I probably just jinxed myself by typing that! We all got haircuts this weekend even Copper so we can all be pretty for Christmas. We also visited both sets of grandparents.
Becca decided she wanted to participate in the Christmas pagaent at church, so she had rehearsal for that Sunday after Mass. Then she changed her mind and decided she wanted to sing in the children's choir instead, so that is what she is going to do. There will only be three girls in the choir and they will be singing 'Away in a manger'.
We got our first snow on Friday. About three inches and Becca had a two hour delay from school. It is already mostly melted but at least we got to play in it for a little while!
It was actually good that the girls got to sleep in because the night before was Becca's winter concert at school so we were out a little late. Lots of singing and music. It was really cute. Unfortunately I left the video camers sitting on the kitchen counter! Oh well.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Gotta love Calvin and Hobbes

Catching up with friends

This past week we have been able to catch up with some friends we haven't seen in a year, The Child Family. Over the summer they moved out to Colorado (conveniently near Aunt Lisa and Uncle Chuck.) This week they have been back in the area and we got a chance to see them not once, but twice! The first time was to celebrate Tracy's parents 50th anniversary. Tracy, her brother Doug and sister, Kim put together a very nice party at the Puritan Restaraunt in Hooksett. Then on Tuesday afternoon, Tracy, Chris, Alison and Abby trekked out to our place to hang out and have dinner with us. I made homemade portobello mushroom and proscuitto pizza that everyone seemed to enjoy. The girls had a great time playing and the adults had a good time chatting. They gave us their expert tips on flying with children so we could go out and visit them.(And Aunty Lisa and Uncle Chuck too, of course!)

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


I quite often see a craft that I must create immediately. Especially this time of the year and sometimes I manage to actually finish the craft and sometimes I do not. This year I came across two crafts and was able to complete both of them. I also have a habit of giving away my crafts which my husband and now my children complain that I never keep any for us. So this time I gave one away and kept one. The first craft was really simple and easy and only took about an hour to complete. It was a Santa made from an empty coffeemate creamer bottle. Yet another habit of mine is seeing a craft and not actually reading directions on how to make it, just making it up as I go. Most of the time this works out okay, sometimes not. With the Santa, no problem.
I enjoyed this craft a lot. It was fairly simple and there is potential to really make a variety of different characters.
I will definitely be playing around with different variations.

The second craft was a Gingerbread man serving tray. I saw this on TV and thought it was absolutely adorable in a goofy sort of way. It is made out of clay pots. I really like working with clay pots, mostly because they are cheap, and you can make lots of different things out of them. I did need to read directions to figure out how to put this guy together and even then it was a little tricky keeping everything in place while the glue dried. The finished size is actually quite large and he would also make a cute little plant stand, which is what I did as you can see in one of the pictures. I think this craft has the potential to become a variety of characters and even uses.

We are keeping the gingerbreadman , Santa has been given away, but I plan on making more! I am thinking about doing a couple of craft fairs next year. I did a couple several years ago and had lots of fun, that was before I had kids though so we'll see. I guess ebay is always an options too.
Anyway, what are your opinions? Would you buy one of my creations at a crafts fair?

Deenie the Elf

Deenie the elf is one of Santa's elves that has come to stay with us until Christmas Eve. On Christmas eve she will return to the North Pole with Santa. Deenie came with some magic snowflakes that the girls sprinkle on her before bed to keep her magical and at night, while everyone is sleeping, Deenie gets into mischief. She hid all our Holiday movies one night. She has decorated the bathroom with toilet paper and turned the water in the toilet green. One morning we even found her watching the movie 'Elf' and eating popcorn! It is always fun to wake up and find out what Deenie has been doing. Of course I'm not sure who is having more fun with this me or the kids but I hope we are creating some fun memories! Check out if you are interested in having your own elf come visit!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

I keep checking the calendar

So tomorrow is December 1st and today we played outside with no coats on and I had a few windows open. I feel like I should be decorating Easter eggs, not Christmas trees! I have lived in New England all my life and I am pretty used to the weather being all over the place, but this is really odd. It's not that strange to not have snow, but temps in the sixties when it should be in the forties is messed up. Becca keeps asking when it is going to snow. It is supposed to get cooler this weekend and possible flurries on Monday so she may get her wish. I am wishing for a little snow too. But just a little and just for Christmas.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

But it certainly doesn't feel like Christmas as far as the weather. It has been in the 50s for several days now.
Traditionally the day after Thanksgiving we go to the Christmas Dove and the girls each pick out an ornament for the tree and we add a piece to our nativity set. Dom and I had a little bit of a hard time getting into the spirit this year because it was close to sixty degrees outside, but the girls were as excited as ever and it is always fun to check out all the Christmas decorations.
They have a really cool chair that looks just like Santa and each girls took a turn sitting in it so mom could get a picture. This is as close as we get to actually sitting on Santa's lap. Neither girl has any interest in sitting in the lap of the mall Santa. I ask every year and every year they say no and that is as far as it goes. I gave up trying to coax and bribe years ago. It wasn't worth the hassle for a crappy polaroid picture.
Upon returning home we got out our Christmas decorations and put up everything but the tree.
This year we had major lighting issues. We do lots of lights inside and out. On the mantle, I light up the nativity set, around windows etc. This year we had several sets that either didn't work at all or only partially worked. We had one set where the two ends were lit up but about 8 inches in the middle wasn't lit up. How does that happen?? After several failed attempts to find that one annoying little bulb causing all the problems we decided to buy some more lights. We also have one of those wire reindeer with the lights on it and the head moves back and forth well within a week of having it last year the lights started to go out. and within two weeks we had what looked like a headless reindeer. We decided to tear off all the lights and put on new ones ourselves. How hard could it be? Harder than I want to admit. Dom kept saying it should be easy for me I'm creative and I kept insisting it should be easy for him he's an engineer. We finally got it look acceptable. We bought the really bright LED lights. Our deer now looks like it grew up in the woods near a nuclear power plant. I love it!
The evening was capped off with a viewing of Frosty the Snowman and A Year Without a Santa Clause. I love Heat miser and Freeze miser. In fact I love most all of the classic kids Christmas shows.

On Saturday we made a trip to the Christmas tree lot just up the road to cut down our tree. They have cute little names for the rows. We got our tree on Frostys Freeway. There's an old cemetary with a sign that says Cemetary of Christmas Past. And a big hill called Burgermeister Hill which is fun to sled down when there is snow on the ground. (Just ask Auntie Lisa.) This sort of helped us get in the spirit with no snow but we made the best of it. We trudged way to the back of the lot (and through the mud) and found a cute little tree we all liked. We brought it back home and got out the ornaments and the Christmas music and had fun 'Rockin around the Christmas tree.' And of course our tree wouldn't be complete without the train around the bottom.
The evening ended with a viewing of the Polar Express. Another great movie.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope that everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving! We had a nice time. Dom and I hosted our parents. Dom was in charge of the turkey and did an excellent job as usual. I was in charge of the sides and dessert. My mom and Dom's mom also provided some yummy goodies. I got brave and tried some new recipes. A mushroom stuffing which was excellent. I also did the green beans with roasted red peppers. Instead of rolls or cornbread I made foccacia. For dessert I made a chocolate cherry cheesecake and chocolate chip biscotti. The adults enjoyed everything, but the kids well...Becca ate a grilled cheese sandwich. Kenzie, who will usually try anything insisted she didn't like turkey and refused to even try one bite. She ate mashed potatoes and corn. I did finally get her to try turkey the next day and she like it. The girls also made some really cute napkin holders to put on the table.
Boomer and my parents dog Toby, chased each other all over the house all day long. After everyone left Boomer was exhausted and curled up with Kenzie to take a rest.

Monday, November 20, 2006

"Kenzie, you're such a Canadian!"

Becca said this to her sister, meaning of course, comedian. This was actually said about two years ago and has since been a running joke in the family. I bring it up today because for the past week Kenzie has acquired somewhat of a Canadian accent. "What a good movie, eh?"
"Blues a great color, eh?" I have no idea where she picked this up and it is amusing and yet disturbing at the same time. I am reminded of parenting articles that I have read about how hurtful it can be to label your children because they will live up to the label. It is obviously true, because now Kenzie thinks she is a Canadian. We may have ruined her life and she will have to spend years in counceling with an identity crisis. Am I American, eh? Am I Canadian, eh? What am I, eh?.....Okay probably not. I mean is there really anything wrong with being Canadian? But it's funny, eh?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

My baby is four!

Mackenzie had a great birthday. Officially she turned four on the 8th and we celebrated with a little party with family and friends on The 11th. It was an Over the Hedge theme and I made her a cake of RJ the raccoon. She got lots of good stuff including the Cars movie that she has watched everyday since she got it. It is really cute especially since we like to watch Nascar. She keeps asking if she looks older and bigger. And when I remind her to do something she states that she already knows that because she is four now. She cracks me up on a daily basis and I wish that I could remember everything she says. We walked into Target the other day and they have a big Christmas tree already set up as you walk in. She looks at it and says really loudly "What the heck do you think this is Christmas?!"

I had a teacher conference for Becca last Thursday. I'll try not to brag and just say she has no problems completing her work. Her reading is off the charts for the testing that they do that ties into the 'no child left behind" BS. I can't believe that they have timed testing starting in Kindergarten. I am praying that once Bush is out of office they get rid of this whole program, because to put in bluntly, I think it sucks. I am so afraid that Becca will become bored because she needs a challenge. I felt better after talking to her teacher. She does let children work ahead that understand what needs to be done then provides fun worksheets to complete if they are done early. Some of the worksheets are on a third grade level that Becca can do. (Okay so I had to brag a little bit.)
We are hosting Thanksgiving this year for my parents and Dom's parents. So I have started planning for that. Becca's social calendar had been full of Birthday parties and I am hoping that the days following Thanksgiving will be a chance to recharge and gear up for Christmas.
Becca just came up to me and asked if I wanted to hear the song that she learned in school.(Out on the playground not music class.) 'Brian and Cynthia sitting in a tree k i s s i n g. First comes love then come marriage then come a baby in a baby carriage'. Some things never change...

Monday, November 06, 2006

New furbaby in the family

Welcome Toby

My parents have a new furbaby, Toby. Though after meeting Toby I think a better name would be Taz. Toby is a cute little bundle of fluff that is a cross between a Shih Tzu and a Poodle, making him a Shih Poo. Yeah say that ten times fast without getting into trouble. Despite only being about 4 lbs. and a quarter of the size of Boomer he gave Boomer a run for his money. They played really well together for the most part. But then Toby would get a little too wound up and start really growling and getting mean and sounding just like a Tazmanian Devil. He is a cutie though, but not at all the type of dog I pictured my dad getting.

Happy Birthday a little early!

The gifts have already been rolling in for Kenzie whose 4th birthday is Wednesday the 8th. We are having a little party for her on Saturday. Dom's parents are unable to come on Saturday so we went down this weekend so they could give her gifts. She made out quite well, with new clothes and toys from Nonna & Nonno and also with gifts sent from Auntie Lisa & Uncle Chuck.

Thanks Guys!!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

The Life Cycle-We've got it backwards!

I received this as an email and thought it was great!

The Life Cycle:

I think the life cycle is all backwards.

· You should start out dead and get it out of the way.
· Then you wake up in a nursing home, feeling better every day.
· You get kicked out for being too healthy, go collect your pension · then, when you start work, you get a gold watch on your first day.
· You work 40 years until you're young enough to enjoy your retirement.
· You drink alcohol, you party, you're generally promiscuous,
· go to college and get ready for high school.
· You go to primary school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities,
· you become a baby.
· Then, you spend your last 9 months floating peacefully with luxuries like central heating, spa, room service on tap, larger living quarters everyday,
· and finally you finish off as an orgasm.
I rest my case.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloween Highlights!

Another Halloween has come and gone. While the children are still blissfully sleeping in their sugar induced coma I will take a few minutes to share the highlights.
Friday evening we headed to Strawberry Banke in Portsmouth for "Ghosts on the Banke".
Many of you may have made school field trips here at some point. It is a colonial village and museum where participants actually live and work. We got to trick or treat from house to house. There was also a bonfire, Storytelling in a barn, firewalkers performing, hayrides, a creatures of the night exhibit. And even a screening of 'The Wizard of Oz' against one of the buildings. We went with a small group of friends and had a great time.
The weather on Saturday was rainy, cold and windy. I had been fighting a cold and Dom took the girls with him to run some errands. It gave me a little chance to rest.
Sunday Dom did yardwork and the girls and I made Halloween cookies. Yummy!!
The girls got to wear their costumes to their respective dance classes. So cute! Becca was a penguin and we decided she must be 'Happy Feet' which is a new movie coming out about a dancing penquin.
On Halloween we were treated to 60 degree weather. No covering up the costumes with coats this year! Remember being a kid and having a great costume? Okay so maybe it wasn't a great costume. It was the cheesy plastic smock thing with a mask that you could hardly see or breath out of. Your face would get all sweaty and you would sound like Darth Vader when you would breathe. Then your mom would make you cover it up with a big winter jacket, hat, mittens. Nobody knew what you were. Those were the days.
There was an early trick or treat for the girls in town at the local businesses. Becca had Sunday School in the evening where mommy got"tricked" as it was actually a Halloween mass, I mean 'All Saints Eve' mass. The kids got to wear costumes and were "treated" to goodies after Mass. The kids thought it was great. As for Mom, it was fun but lets just say mom is glad Halloween is over.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween from the Official Potty Escort

Yes, that is my current title. At least it feels like it should be my official title since it seems no one in this house can go alone, except Dom( thank goodness.) Though he does need some reminding in the 'put down the seat and replace the empty roll' areas. The kids are potty trained but apparently want someone to talk and sing to while they do their business. As well as the occasional butt wipe assistance. I crowned them 'potty partners' so they could go and entertain each other but this sometimes leads to arguments in which case the escort must step in and diffuse the situation.
Boomer also needs a potty escort. I crowned Copper and Boomer 'potty partners' also but this past weekend, when there were 50mph winds and torrential downpours, he clearly gave me a look that said "You're crazy lady, I'm not going out there. I can hold it." before turning around and walking back inside. So of course the potty escort was called in to action. Now the puppy, who it has taken weeks to learn housebreaking, within seconds learns that it is dry under the umbrella and is suddenly glued to my leg. After much coaxing. I finally managed to get him to go and return inside.
Of course being the potty escort means that everyone also feels the need to escort you to the bathroom. I am convinced that there is a little alarm linked to the toilet that goes off the minute I sit down causing at least one or more children or animals to come rushing to the bathroom door. I have also found that if Boomer is one of those to follow me into the bathroom that he thinks "Well she's going so I better." Not Good.
I think I am done venting now. I am just spending way more time around bodily functions than any one person needs to each day. Off to go clean the potty because this is of course another job of the potty escort.
I will update later about our Fun Halloween festivities.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Wonderful Wedding Weekend

Congratulations to my niece Jenna and her new husband, Micah. They were married this past weekend in Baltimore, MD. It was a beautiful, traditional Jewish ceremony. Both the ceremony and reception were held at the Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards which made it extremely easy for the many out of town guests who attended. There were also many attractions within walking distance, including the Red Bull Flugtag. This is an event hosted by Red Bull in many different cities where people create their own homemade flying machine and attempt to fly it off a huge ramp over the water. Each team performs a little skit before launching the plane and pilot directly into the water in most cases. There were some commercials featuring these contraptions that you may have seen. I didn't get to witness this first hand but did hear all about it. Dom and I didn't do any sightseeing unfortunately but are hoping to do a return trip in the near future with the girls.
We arrived in Baltimore in the morning on Saturday and checked into our room. As soon as we opened the door of our room the doorknob fell off on the other side. Kinda of funny, kinda not. Considering this was a really nice Marriott and not the Bates Motel you really don't expect the room to fall apart. Within 10 minutes of settling into our room there was a knock on the door to fix the broken door knob. Great service but a little disturbing as we hadn't even called anyone to come fix it yet. Soon after we grabbed some lunch with my parents and one of my aunt and uncles on the main floor of the hotel. While having lunch the groom stopped over to stay hi and insisted he wasn't nervous. Yet, anyway. My brother, the father of the bride, wandered in to sit and chat for awhile as did Jill's boyfriend, Miles.
After lunch my mom and I went to the bridal suite where the bride, her mom and her bridesmaids were having make-up done for the wedding. My husband took the only key to the room and went to take a nap. I was having a great time hanging out with the girls when I realized I couldn't remember what my room number was. After admitting this with some embarrassment it was suggested I stand out in the hall and just holler for my husband. After deciding that I might possible be thrown out of the hotel for causing an uproar I was able to find out my room number. (Thanks mom.)
The afternoon flew by pretty quickly and before I knew it we were dressed and ready (a wee bit early) for some family pictures and the signing of the Ketubah. The Ketubah is a beautifully decorated marriage contract signed by the bride and groom and two witnesses. Next was the ceremony, that included lovely wedding vows written by the bride and groom to each other. Many tears of happiness were shed. I had no tissues with me, never even crossed my mind that I would need any and I was sitting in the middle of a bunch of guys who of course have no tissues. It wasn't so bad. Then my nose started running. My dress was short sleeved, so that wasn't even an option. I somehow managed to keep myself presentable so that I wouldn't have to walk out into the crowd with snot running down my face.
The reception was fun with lots of dancing and yummy food and cake. I met several people including my brother's neighbor from Michigan. He was so funny. It was definitely one of the best weddings I have ever attended.
We attended breakfast in the morning with the bride and groom and then it was off to the airport for our flight out. I was one of the lucky passengers to be chosen for the random search as we went through security. My underwire bra proceeded to set off the wand and I was treated to the full pat down. Nothing like being felt up by a total stranger in public. They don't say' Thank you for flying the friendly skies' for nothing apparently. Other than that the flight was uneventful. We left the airport to gather the children and animals at their various locations and then settled in at home. We left the airport before my parents and unknowlingly left with the baggage claim ticket. Normally not a big deal except their luggage didn't show up. They were able to find it with only a small delay. And normally they wouldn't have minded a little extra delay except that upon returning home my dad was headed to Pittsburg, NH to go Moose hunting. He was not a Happy Camper but everything turned out okay!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Fall Favorites

I love to bake. Especially in the fall and winter when the weather gets cooler. I thought I would share a couple of my favorite recipes that we have been enjoying lately.

The first two recipes are lowfat treats!

Easiest muffins ever

1 box of spice cake mix or chocolate cake mix
1 15 oz can of pumpkin

Mix together and place in greased muffin tin. Fill muffin cups to the top as these don't rise much. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 mins.
Makes approx. 9 muffins.

Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies

1 box of carrot or spice cake mix
1 can of pumpkin
1 cup of mini chocolate chips(optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
Combine cake mix, pumpkin and chocolate chips and beat with mixer until blended. Place by spoonfuls on cookie sheet and bake for 18-20 mins.

Chocolate Chip pumpkin bread

4 Cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 Cups sugar
3/4 cup butter softened
4 eggs
1/2 Cup of water
1 (15oz) can pumpkin
1 Cup plus two Tbsp miniature semisweet chocolate chips
2 tsp sugar

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottoms only of 2 8x4 inch loaf pans with shortening, lightly flour. Mix together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg until mixed; set aside.
Beat two cups of sugar and butter on med. speed 1 to 2 mins. or until creamy. Add eggs one at a time. Beat in water and pumpkin. Add flour mixture a little at a time until moistened. Stir in 1 cup of chocolate chips. Spread evenly in pans sprinkle tops with remaining chips and 2 tsp sugar. Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 15 mins. or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. cool in pans 10 mins them remove to wire rack.

Caramel Apple Crisp

3 Cups old fashioned oats
2 Cups flour
1 1/2 Cups packed brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 Cup cold butter
8 Cups thinly sliced tart apples(granny smith)
1 pkg. caramels, halved
1 Cup apple cider divided

In a large bowl combine oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon. Cut in the butter until crumbly.
Press half of the mixture into a greased 13x9x2 inch baking dish. Layer half of the apples and caramels and 1 cups of the oat mixture. Repeat layers. Pour half cup of cider over the top and bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 mins. drizzle with remaining cider, bake 15-20 mins longer or until the apples are tender.


Friday, October 13, 2006

Apples, Pumpkins and Dancers, Oh My!

It has been a busy week but last weekend was by far the busiest in a long time. Saturday morning Becca had an extra dance class and in the afternoon she had pictures for Soccer and then a Soccer game. Her soccer game went extra long because the opposing team was losing and Their coach wanted to keep going so his team could at least tie it up. Didn't happen. Becca's team still won. Becca is still a little timid when it comes to actually kicking the ball, but she runs around like crazy. Well she is only six, she's having fun and has plenty of time to learn. After Soccer we had dinner and then Dom and the girls headed off to church.

Sunday the weather was gorgeous, so in the morning we headed off to Butternut Farm to pick apples and pumpkins. We missed our good friends, the Childs, who in the past had been our apple picking buddies. They recently moved to Colorado. (We were thinking of you guys!!) We still had fun then headed home for lunch. We had a short break and then it was off to Maine for a fundraiser for the Make-a-wish foundation. The dance school that Becca and Mackenzie attend does a lot for Make-a-wish and they held a performance to raise money and both girls were asked to participate. Both girls were in the opening number which was several cute fingerplays.
Becca also performed the dance that she did for the recital last year with three other girls.
There were about 25 performances all together and it was fun to watch.

Monday was another beautiful day with temps in the mid 70's. We spent the morning doing yardwork and cleaning up the garage. Becca had dance class again in the evening and that ended our holiday weekend. The rest of the week has just been regular run of the mill stuff. Nothing too exciting but the foliage has been nice and so has the weather. Today was a classic fall day cool, clear and crisp.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Mackenzie's "A" List

Or more to the point what she wants for her birthday. This is for anyone looking for ideas.
Anything to do with The Little Mermaid, we do have the movie but nothing else.
Little Mommy Toddler Doll.
12 Dancing Princesses Movie, dolls or music.
Loves doing crafts and cooking.
She loves clothes too, but can be picky. She wears a 4T.
Also anything to do with animals.(but please no more stuffed animals!)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Boomers first trick!

Now I don't actually have to run the dishwasher, I just stick Boomer in there. I can save money on dishwasher detergent and electricity! Soooo... who wants to come over for dinner?!

Monday, October 02, 2006


This past weekend we made a trip up to Storyland. We met up with some friends we hadn't seen in a long time and lots of fun was had by all. I remember coming here as a child and it has changed so much and every year they seem to add something new. This year both girls were very interested in going on the rides. The teacups and the merry-go-round were the favorites. we even went on the the turtle twirl which is like the Tilt-a-whirl. They hated it, but didn't cry or get sick(though I thought Kenzie was going to lose it for a second) just stated they never wanted to go on that ride again! We brought Boomer with us because Storyland offers free kennels and we could visit him and take him for a walk every couple of hours. We probably would have brought Copper too but my car is in the shop and we all had to squeeze into the Focus, it wasn't a bad ride though and we saved money on gas.
So the not so fun part of the weekend is that there is something wrong with the transmission on my vehicle. For those of you who don't know, we purchased a used Ford Expedition in the spring. I have only had it for four months and now something is wrong with the trasmission. We dropped it off Friday and they still have it. On Friday they told me that it was very low on transmission fluid but they couldn't find a leak anywhere, which means that they are going to have start tearing it apart to find the problem. It is now late Monday afternoon and I haven't heard from them at all, I'd like to be optimistic and say that no news is good news but I know that is not the case this time. The good news is that it is still under warranty.
As I was typing this the Ford garage called. It is not the transmission! It was actually three loose spark plugs and a burnt coil, this was also causing a tapping sound and a gas smell both things I asked them to check out while they had it. Easy fix and I can get my car back. So that's everything you never wanted to know about my car problems.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Fairy Houses

I am making a book recommendation for people with children or anyone who likes or believes in fairies. The book is called Fairy Houses by Tracy Kane. The book is about a little girl who takes a trip to an island off the coast of Maine and while walking in the woods discovers that people have built fairy houses all over. The girl builds her own fairy house and has many suprises over her stay on the island. The book also encourages you too build your own fairy house which has become something the girls and I really enjoy doing. The only rule is you can't use anything living or artificial to make your fairy house. We have found that the Spring and the Fall are the best times as there is a lot of sticks, leaves. acorns and other things that fall to the ground. I have included a picture of our most recent fairy house. There is also a website for anyone intersted in checking it out.

Puppy Pals

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Boom Baby!

Here is the newest member of our family, Boomer. We brought home Boomer yesterday afternoon. He did pretty well on the car ride home. He did of course do some protesting but soon settled down and slept most of the ride home. Copper has been pretty tolerant of Boomer, for an old man. The cat too, has held her ground and after a few curious sniffs Boomer moves on. The cat, right now is taller then Boomer but Boomer is the heavier one. He was the biggest of his litter and has huge paws. He will grow into a very sturdy boy. He has a beautiful, soft, silky coat.
The girls are of course in love with him. Its pretty hard to resist that face. He loves playing with the girls especially running around the yard. He likes following Copper around too, and tries to get Copper to play with him, while Copper prefers to ignore him.
So far we are all adjusting well. We've got a long road of training before us, but I think it will be a good learning experience for all of us. I will post more pictures later. It's hard to get him to sit still!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Another Soccer Mom

I have joined the ranks of"soccer mom". Becca signed up to play soccer with the local boys and girls club. She is so excited. She attended a soccer camp over the summer. (Just an hour a day for a week.) and loved it. Dom is pretty excited too, as he was a big soccer player in school. Her first game it Saturday. I am a little bummed that I will miss it because I will be off getting our new puppy. Yea, you read that right, we are getting a new puppy. We have been talking about it for awhile and decided to go for it. Copper is 11 years old and his age is starting to show. Physically, he doesn't look old. He's not even gray at all. But he is getting stiff after laying down for long periods and his hearing is going. I hope he has a couple of years left in him but you never know. I have had many people suggest getting another dog before anything happens to Copper so we decided to go for it.
The new puppy is another Springer Spaniel. A black and white male. After much discussion we decided on the name Boomer. We found a breeder via the internet. It was quite a drive, up past Franconia Notch and where the Old Man used to be. ( It still makes me sad that the old man on the mountain is gone and that my children never got a chance to see it. ) The foliage is well on its way to changing and it was a nice, but long drive. I will post more on Boomer when we bring him home.
I survived Sunday at church with very few problems. The girls did pretty good, thought they were getting restless by the end. The church was pretty full and I chose to sit in the last pew.
After we were seated Kenzie said very loudly "I can't see!" but other than that we were off to a good start. After about twenty minutes Kenzie started to get restless and my little rebel wanted to stand when everyone sat and sit when everyone was standing. Being in the last row I ignored it as she wasn't bothering anyone. By the end she demanded to know, a little too loudly, what we were still doing there. After an hour mass I had to bring them to the parent meeting for Sunday school. This did not go over well at all. "You mean we're staying here?" Kenzie screeched as she watched everyone file out of the church.
I gave her a pen and a piece of paper to entertain her. Becca demanded a pen and preceded to pretend to stab her sister with it repeatedly complete with the sound effects from Psycho.
The only thing I remember from the meeting was the importance of the children attending Mass. I just smiled and thought to myself I can't wait for Dom to do this next week.

Friday, September 15, 2006

More Vacation pics.

On a Fishin' Mission

Kenzie caught her first fish off the dock at Merrymeeting Lake. It was a little sunfish or pumpkin seed.
She reeled it in all by herself and was so excited!
The girls actually spent more time practicing casting and playing with worms than they actually did fishing. But they had fun and that's what really counts!

Hopkinton State Fair

We had fun at the fair. The girls favorite ride is of course the Merry-go-round. They also had fun in the bounce house.
The animals were a big hit too, but by the time we got to the petting zoo the animals weren't very hungry. In fact many of them looked so full they could hardly move. The girls still enjoyed petting the goats and sheep!

Lost River Gorge

I would really like to return to the Lost River when the foliage changes but I don't want to deal with all the crowds! It might just might be worth it for the pictures though!