Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

I know everyone posts Halloween pictures this time of year, but some of these are just classic and I had to share. We were in Disney the week before Halloween so I wasn't very prepared this year - I kind of thought in the back of my mind that somehow we would miss the holiday all together and then I realized while we were away that we would be back just in time. We got off the plane in Grand Rapids at 3pm and were ready to trick or treat by 6pm. Luckily, all I had to do was borrow a Superman costume from our friends across the street for Dylan, unpack Ella's princess dress from her suitcase, and dig out a chicken suit for Mady from our costume bin downstairs.
Our little princess.
I asked Dylan to take a picture of Mady and me. He took one, looked proud of himself and said, "I got everything except your eyes and your forehead."
Second try (handed the camera to Matt this time) - Mady really wasn't this happy. She was still exhausted from our trip but she tolerated the chicken suit as long as she was being held.
We introduced the chicken to the bear -
love Ty's calm...Mady...a little dramatic.
Our kids + our favorite neighbors' kids - an adorable bear and Batman.
Take One: the chicken tries to escape.
Take Two: that's a little better.
Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

big girl

I snapped this picture of Mady last night - Dylan and Ella were playing in the front yard and she was having so much fun watching them and "yelling" at them. She just turned 11 months old and it seems like she's suddenly growing up so fast. She has six teeth now - four on top, two on bottom - and she's eating more and more table food (bananas and whole wheat bread are two of her favorite foods...and chocolate chip cookies that Daddy sneaks her).

She is pulling up on everything and can stand on her own for a few seconds at a time. She looks around at us and grins until she falls on her bottom. Yesterday for the first time, I caught her walking while holding onto the couch. Big sister walked at 11 1/2 months; I'm guessing Mady might follow in her footsteps.

We are counting down the days until we are done with formula and bottles and the infant car seat (remember how your baby stuff was all shiny and new with Kid #1? By Kid #3 all you want to do is throw it in the nearest trash container.)

She is definitely the baby in our family - she gets lots of extra attention and I'm sure we're coddling her in a lot ways...but she still has a lot of  years ahead of her to develop some character, right? For now, she is our baby and we love her to pieces.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Mini Monkey Breads

You know how you save recipes thinking "I'll try that later" and then never do? I have an entire folder devoted to this idea - and today I finally did try one out. The recipe is just a basic monkey bread recipe but you make mini ones in muffin tins instead of a big one in a Bundt pan. I cut all the ingredients in four also so I could use just one small can of biscuits - it ended up making 6 muffin sized loafs which was perfect for an after school treat.

Mini Monkey Breads (makes 6)
1 can buttermilk biscuits (7.5 oz)
1/4 C sugar (or just under)
3/4 t cinnamon
1/4 C brown sugar (or just under)
2-3 T butter

Cut each biscuit in four. Shake with cinnamon and sugar in a gallon Ziploc bag. Place biscuits inside muffin cups, filling about 2/3 full (spray bottoms first with Pam). Over the stove combine butter and brown sugar, melting the butter completely. Spoon the liquid over each muffin cup. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes, until tops are golden brown.

cold turkey

We are trying to kick our Pull-Ups-at-night habit around here (note: there is a reason why there haven't been many recent blog posts around here: this is as exciting as it gets around here).

Last Monday morning, somehow a Pull-Up exploded in our room as Dylan and Ella were doing their first-thing-in-the-morning-run-around-mom-and-dad's-room routine and I decided I had enough of the pee-filled chemical holders known as Pull-Ups. I made up a big speech about how they were big kids and we could do this and we were going to give away their Pull-Ups to other kids who need them. Poof. The Pull-Ups vanished from the hall closet and I vowed not to look back. Or at least give it a good week.

It's been a week and it's actually going better than expected. They have each had a couple of completely dry nights and a few "almost" nights. I think the most encouraging thing is that they actually seem to care - some of you have been the lucky recipients of sleeping-in-underwear updates by our dear children (if you see them on a morning when they were dry all night, they are going to tell you about it....just a warning.)

I have done a couple of late night sheet changings and a lot of extra wash this past week, but I haven't had to throw any wet Pull-Ups in the trash dumpster or fork over any more money at Target...and the grins on my kid's faces in the morning are priceless...all in all, I call it a success.
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