Random Photos from the Week

I'm not sure who is responsible for half of the pictures on my camera from this past week (I'm suspecting Finn), but here's a random assortment of them.

My camera can vouch for signs of life around these parts even when my blog can't.
Eat With Me: Lunch on a Friday

Travis thinks me eating sauteed spinach is weird. What do you think? I say if I'm gonna get my leafy greens, it's the easiest way for it to go down. I know you can make shakes out of the stuff, but I just prefer it cooked in a little bit of olive oil with salt and pepper. And as for the tuna, I prefer chopped celery in it. What about you? We had it with apples, nuts, and celery growing up. And now I'm eating an orange to cap the whole meal off. I always have to have something sweet after a meal!


Things are looking up for the sickies in this household.
Nasal congestion has subsided tremendously, we're actually getting some good sleep at night...

...Henry is adjusting quite nicely to drinking from a bottle. (This photo is of a couple days ago when he was sick, hence the red eyes).

Thanks for all of your well wishes.


Proving Ground

Do you ever have those times where you feel like the Man Upstairs is trying to see what you're made of? I'm sure I'm not alone in this one. I've caught a nasty bug that manifests itself in headaches, chills, hot flashes, achiness, sore eyes, and congestion. On top of that, I am weaning Henry because he was pinching me, giving me cut-like marks, causing me to bleed. When I saw that his mouth was covered in blood like a toddler getting into lipstick, I decided it was time. So I'm engorged. Not fun at all. I woke up unrested after one of those nights where someone needed help every hour. I went in to get Miles who had pooped all over his sheets and his body. Luckily I can't smell very well, because what I could smell was awful. Henry had a similar, but not so messy, morning greeting for me, plus he spit up all over me. Finn has missed 8 out of 10 days of school the past two weeks because of a bug he has. Plus, Travis is on a rotation at a hospital that he describes as "outer darkness" and says it's so dumb he can't even talk about it. Poor guy.

Some good things to counteract all this negative:

My new nephew Ted, born on Wednesday morning. Such a cutie!

My friend brought me chicken noodle soup and homemade bread this morning. How do I have such sweet, kind friends?

The weekend is here. Maybe I can catch up on my sleep while my main man is at home.


Virtual Treat for You!

{World Market had this pretty red paper ribbon--I couldn't pass it up}

It's Saturday night, the kids are in bed, Travis just left with some friends for the evening, and I am reveling in the quiet. The ticking clock, the sound of the dryer running, the hot air coming out of the heater vents. It is soothing. A stark contrast to the constant motion around these parts in waking hours.

This past week has been nonstop. I feel worn out and tired. Finn missed the entire week of school getting over the flu. Lucy caught it at the end of the week and stayed home to heal up too. I don't know if it's the unrelenting "on-call-ness" of being a mother to four young ones, or the time of year (read: snow and dreariness), but I feel like my reserves are depleted.

I'm kind of in this holding pattern: not soon enough to start packing, but not settled enough to dig deep. We move in a little over 3 months. I've already thought out what needs to be done between now and then (remember, I'm a planner and list-maker), but it's a little soon to get cracking on it. Do I start sewing quilts to bide my time, or just watch, ritualistically, Entertainment Tonight, like I've been doing. I take heart in my Mom's advice to watch as many movies at night as I want during these cold winter months.

The big production (having a baby) is over, and now it's time to find the next thing to sink my teeth into. Don't get me wrong: I am loving this phase of little Henry. He melts me like none other. It's just that the dust is settling and I need that healthy distraction all mothers need to keep doing their daytime jobs (i.e. a project). Always a project with me.

I'm sure I'll find the spark again. It seems I have written about this before (wink). And, as in times past, something good will surface. If I just keep putting on those winter coats and boots, keeping an eye on the horizon, letting the snow fall, something good will come of it. I can feel it.


Cupcakes for Lucy

I saw this method for decorating cupcakes in a book at the library and filed it away mentally for later use.
The petals are made by simply cutting mini marshmallows in half diagonally, then dipping the sticky part in colored sugar.
The book showed the whole top of the cupcake covered in them, but to save time I just did a single little flower, then put a dot of colored frosting in the center. With canned frosting, you can't get much easier than that.

On her birthday, we had white texas sheet cake. It is divine. Here's the recipe if you'd like to make some (and go to heaven) too.

White Texas Sheet Cake

1 cup butter
1 cup water
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda


1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup milk
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

In small saucepan, bring butter and water to boil. Remove from heat. In large bowl, mix flour, sugar, eggs, sour cream, almond extract, salt and baking soda. Add butter and water mixture. Beat until smooth. Pour into greased 15x10 inch baking pan. Bake at 375 for 16-18 minutes or until cake is golden brown and tests done. Cool for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, for frosting, combine butter and milk in saucepan. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Add sugar and almond extract and mix well. Spread over warm cake.