Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Dog? What Dog?!

Well, good news. We were able to briefly take her mind off of wanting a dog.
This is now the top of her list. Four of them acutally.

Thanks to friends, Chris and Lisa, a horse is trumping dog.

This boy thinks that would be fine too.

Maicy throroughly enjoyed taking the reigns from Chris and showing us what she could do.

Of course bare back was fun too...

So, the new plan? These two beg dad for a horse...
we're thinking he'll go find a dog pretty quickly!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Is Type A a better way to be?

I have noticed a trend while blog-hopping recently. When reading people's bio's a number of women start by saying "I'm a typical Type A personality and am organizer, multi-tasking, exercising enthusiastic, happiest when juggling 50 things in the air". If its not in their bio, it ends up sometime in their blog posts. The other thing I noticed is that I have yet to see anyone say "I'm your typical Type B personality and I'm a slow sloth when it comes to deadlines, have a horribly unorganized home, and really just kind of let things go. I will exercise, but don't make it a schedule as little in my life is scheduled."

So, today I started to wonder if Type A is better. Is it something that is so great that we should tell everyone that this is what we've achieved? Should it be the goal of all type B's to become more of an A? Or is it simply that A's are just more driven and goal oriented therefore giving themselves a label helps add to their sense of accomplishment? Or is it that the general nature of B's is so laid back that they really never thought to analyze their own personality, much less broadcast it. They simply don't care.

In case you think I am knocking one or the other, I will tell you that I see both personalities in myself and therefore can't label myself one or the other. I like the thought of organization, but rarely execute it regularly. I have oodles and oodles of baskets for organizing, yet they are all just junk collectors and when one fill, I move on to another. If I am put on a committee of some sort, I would generally rather just run it, because I lack patience to watch people do it the hard way. And at those moments, the B's can make me insane! If you are going to do something, just do it! Yet A's just seem so... I don't know... busy. I do like to relax and read a book and not feel the need to work all the time.

I decided to look up on Wikipedia what their opinion is of Type A vs Type B and I have to be honest, they were a little rough on the A's!

Type A individuals can be described as impatient, time-conscious, controlling, concerned about their status, highly competitive, ambitious, business-like, aggressive, having difficulty relaxing; and are sometimes disliked by individuals with Type B personalities for the way that they're always rushing.They are often high-achieving workaholics who multi-task, drive themselves with deadlines, and are unhappy about delays. Because of these characteristics, Type A individuals are often described as "stress junkies."

Type B individuals, in contrast, are described as patient, relaxed, and easy-going, generally lacking an overriding sense of urgency. Because of these characteristics, Type B individuals are often described by Type As as apathetic. There is also a Type AB mixed profile for people who cannot be clearly categorized.

I guess I am Type AB. There you have it, I'm now labeled. Hunh.
I better change my profile.

So, Type A's, Type B's and those AB's out there, I ask you? Is one better than the other? Is it better to be an A who loves deadlines gets things done, keeps life organized, and does it with grace? Or is it better to be laid back, happy go lucky, go with the flow kind of people? Is it a Mary verses Martha argument?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Dog days of summer

This summer life has brought us to an acreage in the middle of nowhere. Well close to that anyways.
We left our cul-de-sac full of friends for a life far from civilization. Or at least 7 miles from the nearest town, and lets face it, it may as well be further.

We now have 5 acres of land that we call home. Coming from our small lot- thats a good amount. Naturally our kids thought this would be the perfect time to get a dog that would romp through the grass with them. Playing fetch and chasing butterflies- or flies.
But my dear hubby, whom I love with all my heart, is anti-dog. He never owned a dog or any other pet growing up and I believe that this has damaged him fully in being able to love a furry creature.
Somethime during our married life I did just ignore him and get a dog. It was the dumbest dog ever. And we didn't have time to train her or take proper care of her. Then I became pregnant and very, very sick. Very. I couldn't take care of me, much less the dog. And then I was in the hospital for a short stint and the dog went crazy making the neighbors less than friendly. Bye- bye puppy.

So, my one chance and I seemed to have blown it.
All this to say, are you, my readers, dog owners?

Do you love your furballs more than your ungrateful children?
Are dogs right up there with rats in your opinion?
Do you prefer cats to dogs? Cuz if so, I do have one you  may husband told me if our cat (which we didn't get, it came to us, we didn't ask for her, I didn't want her, I am allergic to it.) would accidentally get into the pesticide which bathes our house to attempt to kill the millipedes, he would consider replacing it with a dog to mend his princess's broken heart. He shouldn't mention that to a past life cat murderer. I'm just saying. NO, I am not going to kill my daughter's kitty so please don't call DHS or PETA or anything like that... I'm just stating facts is all.  Perhaps I should find a millipede eating dog... then he'd be sold?

What breed of dog do you recommend for those who have one?
Small lap dog, or big brave dog?

Here is Miss Maicy with her late buddy, Lucky. This was my aunt and uncle's dog and Maicy loved this lucky puppy to bits. Now tell me... how can you say no to this face?!

(Lucky died a few weeks ago and this little girl cried harder and longer than I've seen her cry for a long time. My husband of course felt this was a good reason to skip the dog ownership)

Okay, lay your opinions on me!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Giant Marshmallow Fun!

Giant Marshmallows. Some love 'em. Some hate 'em.
If you've got the patience to waith 10 minutes for one to cook, I recommend them. For the kids of course!

Here is Jackson with his s'more. With one marshmallow. Yup, just one.

A little bit messy, Maicy?!

Why wouldn't you want your kids to have this much fun?!
Hope y'all are having a great summer!
We sure are, so I apologize for the lack of posts, but we're busy enjoying our time together!
Happy snacking!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies- EVER!

Just in case after my last post you feel as though you can never look to me for a worthy recipe again, I am here to redeem myself!

I grew up on these Chocolate Chip cookies and they are my favorite! These are my go-to cookie recipe. There was of course a brief period in my life when I decided that all cookies must be soft and chewy, not crispy and crunchy like these, so I didn't see them for awhile. But I've returned... they are so good.

Here is a shot of what you'll need. I know it looks like a lot of ingredients, but these are really easy to throw together. And if you don't have something- it'll probably be just fine.

Then as usual find yourself a super cute assistant:

One of the most important ingredients, Coconut. Oh, it makes these so yummy.
Of course, if you don't like coconut you may certainly leave this out, but I will feel sorry for you if you don't use it. You don't know what you're missing. If you're on the fence about the coconut, let me reassure you that it in no way makes these coconut flavored cookies. It just adds a little, "hmm, that's good, what's in these?" kind of quality.

Roll our your dough and give it a little love tap on the cookie sheet to flatten them a bit.
No, I'm really not sure why, but if you don't, your cookies won't work.
So love 'em a little!

After you bake them for 12-15 minutes, you can transfer them to a cooling rack.
Or, if you are living in an old farmhouse far away from your real house and don't have your racks with you, a good old brown paper bag will work too.

Let cool enough to not burn your tongue on the chocolate chips....
then, enjoy!

(reactions may differ, but I think these speak for themselves)

Now that you've stuck with me this far, or skimmed to the end, here is the recipe:

Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
1 cup butter
1 cup oil
1 egg
1 tsp coconut flavoring
2 tsp vanilla extract
Cream together, then add:
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup oatmeal ( old fashioned or quick, it really doesn't matter to me)
1 cup coconut
1 cup Rice Krispies cereal
1 cup (or 2 or 3) semi sweet chocolate chips

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 12-15 minutes or edges turn golden brown.
Cool on wire rack.
(these freeze great too!)
Makes appx 4 dozen

Linking up to Hope Studios for Tutorial Tuesday!
Seriously people, if you want some great ideas to for DIY projects you have to check out these links!
Or if you really want to feel inadequate about your ability to walk and chew gum, this will do the trick!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Worst Recipe EVER... but I'm gonna share anyway

...only because I have so many pictures of my kids helping me make this catastrophe.

We were making Cherry jam.
I was so excited to make this as we  have a sour cherry tree on our acreage.

Having only ever made Rhubarb jam, I was quite inexperienced with the whole cherry thing, but ready to give it a try.
You have to start by pitting your cherries. Did you know they make a cherry pitter?! I didn't, but now I own one!
I have the oxo brand cherry pitter from since that's what was most recommended.
Here is Jackson working hard to make this mess work. With his sister hovering over him of couse telling him just how to do it. Girls. We're all the same.

I had a batch of frozen cherries, and fresh off the tree ones. I recommend not freezing them first! The pit comes out much cleaner on fresh ones. We froze them because I was waiting for my cherry pitter to arrive.
One other downside to freezing first is the mess they make when they thaw.

Case in point: This was before I started. I had the brilliant idea to set them in my colander. With nothing more than a towel underneath
And then I had to move the colander to the sink. This is my floor.
But, I am nothing if not stubborn. So, we press on. Oh yes we do.
On with the cherry pitting!
(normally I would recommend putting away the 5 gallons of bugspray and such sitting on your counter so that no one suspects that is what's making the jam taste so bad)

See the cherry? You squeeze that and then the pit pops out the bottom. In theory of course.
On a side note-(is there anything in this post that isn't a sidenote?!)- if you are going to pit 2lbs of cherries I highly recomment finding 2 gullible children to help. If you don't have your own, go to the nearest park or family member and borrow some. They will save your sanity. (as always, check with parents before removing children from parks)

Okay, after you have your cherries pitted you'll want to chop them up well.
I also added some mullberries to mine because I had them and the kids wanted to go pick them. I figured it couldn't hurt.

Because in the past I have only done freezer jam instead of canning it, I decided to get the pectin for freezer jam. This may have been where my biggest mistake was made.
I ended up using the recipe on the back because I wanted it to properly set up.
I knew it was strange for 2 reasons.
1) you didn't cook it. (yes I see that it says that plain as day on the front, but the only freezer ones said no cook)
2) it only called for 1 1/2 cups of sugar

The end result? Nasty. Worst jam ever.
Oh sure, it looks beautiful, but blech.

Knowing that the amount of sugar was shockingly low- if you've ever made jam or jelly you know that 1 1/2 cups of sugar is nothing.
So, after taking some time away from the jam, I came back the next week and threw it all into a pot on the stove and added about 4 more cups. Now that's jam the way grama meant for it to be.
Goes to show you that you should go with your first instingt, but lesson learned. ;)
So, enjoy?
Or don't.
Just be warned when your jam doesn't call for enough sugar to make your teeth hurt.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Its a Plague... and I've had enough

First off, I hope y'all had a fabulous 4th of July! We had some great times with friends who drove down to Nebraska to see us, and had some firework action too.

And then we also had to deal with the plague that hit our home.

Millions of them.

My husband had this looked at by "professionals"

They say there isn't much we can do. They are on a migratory pattern and therefore have invaded every inch of our lawn, landscape, and even,

My house. Oh be still my heart.

They crunch.

On a postive note, they are mostly contained to the basement.
But, pessimists, don't fear, I have a down side. This is where our bedrooms are. And bathroom.
Did I mention they crunch?
I no longer go downstairs without flipflops.
I do believe that we are gaining despite being told nothing will kill them.
We vacuum 5 times a day.
We have used up more than what is humanly natural in pesticides.

I have discovered that even room deodorizer will do the trick. Albeit a slow death with that, its still a death- and lets face it, that's my goal. Don't judge me. You sit on the toilet with one of those things coming towards your bare toes and tell me you wouldn't do the same thing. And enjoy it.

Have any of you faced these miserable creatures?
What are your suggestions?

** I'm not exactly sure what's going on with Blogger today, but the comments aren't all showing up. I am receiving them via email, so I did get to read them, even if they don't show up on here.
Sorry about that!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A Glimpse..

Everyday I see these nasty weeds growing.
Everyday I shake my head disgusted by them.
I know its going to hurt to pull them out, but I have to get rid of them before they choke out the other plants.

But sometimes I let them go too far. And then I see this.

Those nasty weeds blossom into am amazing bloom.

Today I'm looking around at the ordinary and seeing the sacred in God's creation.
Taking time to stop and see what He has done.
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