Wednesday, January 30, 2013

We Are Okay

I'm sure you are all worried about the storms and wondering if we made it through unscathed.
(you are, right?  hello? anyone there?)

There was a deadly tornado in the Atlanta area but lucky for us it was on the other side of town.
We just enjoyed some wind and a ton of rain.
I have never seen the drainage ditch out back hold so much water.

Our county did have a tornado warning in the morning but that was for the other side of the county.  However, the schools don't discriminate.  Lauren and Tyler both said they had a Tornado Drill for about an hour.  Tyler's class went into the hallway and assumed "the position." (seated on the ground, head between the legs and arms over and protecting the head)  Lauren's class started off in the hallway in "the position" but after awhile they made their way to the teacher's lounge.  Lauren told me another class wasn't so lucky.  They had to hunker down in the girls bathroom.  Lauren said the boys didn't really enjoy that.

After that warning expired school continued as normal.
I kept watching the news and by noon tornado warnings were going off like crazy.
(somehow my weather radio is set for all the counties of GA, not just my own)
On the it looked like the squall line was going to hit our area right as the kids were being let out of school.
After checking in with my personal weatherman (thanks Mr. Buddy) I decided to go all out paranoid/protective Mom and check the kids out of school an hour early...before the storm hit.
(I saw 4 of my friends in the front office doing the same thing.)

I'm so glad I checked them out because right about dismissal time a Severe Thunderstorm Warning was issued.  Since these Severe Thunderstorms can often produce tornadoes they shut down the school and didn't let anyone leave....for about 40 minutes!
I would have been beside myself and all crazy-like.

Instead I'm happy to say Lauren and Tyler got to drive me crazy-like all safe and sound at home.

seriously, what is she?

I hope you all enjoy your crazy evening.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

the Calm before the Storm

The weather today is eerie.
It's humid, it's warm and it's the end of January.
Something is brewing.

It was 74 degrees at the Oriental Market when I bought Green Curry Paste for tonight's dinner.

It was 72 degrees when the kids finished their homework and went outside to play.

After jumping on the trampoline they went out front to draw a chalk neighborhood.  Then they drove their remote control vehicles all around it. 


 smile Tyler...but don't bother your sister

(here he is bothering his sister)

It was so warm today.  I hate to complain but I know what's coming.
So far we just have Wind Advisories but I hear there is a possibility of severe thunderstorms and maybe ToRnAdOs.

Whatever comes our way I'm glad we enjoyed the Calm before the Storm.

Enjoy the video montage of L and T enjoying the warm weather.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Weekly Menu 1-28-2013

Matt's week (well sort of.)  Matt e-mailed me a link to a bunch of recipes he's craving from Food Network.

In his e-mail he mentioned craving a simple meal of spaghetti & meat sauce with garlic bread and also some sort of curry dish.  In addition he sent me the following cravings:

I checked out his suggestions and then tried to find healthier alternatives if needed.  I'll be working from his list for a couple of weeks.  I love to cook and am happy to please as long as I can tone down the fat and calories.

Monday:  Spaghetti with Meat Sauce and garlic bread & strawberries
Tuesday:  Thai Green Curry Coconut Shrimp with Basil & jasmine rice & edamame
Wednesday:  Quick Vegetarian Taco Soup & tortillas & chips/nachos? & fruit
Thursday:  Chicken Piccata & steamed broccoli & steamed red potatoes & fruit
Friday:  Individual Turkey Shepherd's Pie & green salad & fruit
Saturday:  l/o or pantry meal
Sunday:  Super Bowl mini-Party!  chili? and appetizers?  not sure what I'll make yet.

Have a tasty week, y'all!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Buffalo Chicken "Cupcakes"

I have been looking forward to dinner tonight ever since I made my weekly menu last Sunday.  I couldn't wait to try the Buffalo Chicken "Cupcakes" from Emily Bites.  
Let me say they did not disappoint.  Matt raved on and on about them.

I made a couple of changes so here is my slightly varied recipe:

Buffalo Chicken "Cup Cakes"
(inspired by Emily Bites

2 c. cooked boneless, skinless chicken breast, chopped up small (1/4 inch dice)
4 Laughing Cow Original Creamy Swiss wedges, broken into pieces
3 T. Buffalo wing sauce (I used Frank's Red Hot Wings Buffalo sauce)
1/2 stalk celery, chopped small (1/4 inch dice)
24 wonton wrappers (typically found in the produce section)
2oz (1/2 cup reduced fat 2% shredded cheddar cheese)

1.  Pre-heat the oven to 375.  Lightly mist 12 cups in a muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.  
2.  In a microwavable bowl, combine the chicken, cheese wedges and wing sauce. Microwave for 1 1/2 minutes.  Stir to combine until chicken mixture is fully coated with cheese and wing sauce.  Stir in the chopped celery pieces.

3.  Layer 2 won ton wrappers into each sprayed muffin tin. 
4.  Using equal amounts (about 2 T. per tin) distribute the buffalo chicken mixture into the wonton wrappers.
5.  Sprinkle the grated cheddar cheese evenly over each of the buffalo chicken won tons.
6.  Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden brown.  Let cool 5 minutes before removing from muffin tin.
Yields: 12 cupcakes, 2 or 3 per serving

Eat and Enjoy!
I served them with a green salad and we called it good.  It was a Yummy dinner indeed.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Boy Scouts Pinewood Derby 2013

Today was the Pinewood Derby Race for Boy Scouts.
It was amazingly high-tech and superbly organized.  Our Pack is top-notch.

Inspection and Weigh-in
Tyler's Creeper car weighed exactly 5 oz just like we wanted.
(No car may be more than 5 oz.)

walking up and ready for his 1st race

On Your Mark, Get Set


at the finish line waiting for the results

 Heading back up to race again.  
(Each car gets to race 4 times, once on each track.  The final time is an average of the 4 races.)

He's got the hang of it now.

Waiting for the final results to be announced.

Tyler won 3rd PLACE for the Tiger Cubs!!!

Proud Tyler
He loves his trophy!

Next Up: The Sibling Races
Lauren with her "Steve" car

there they go!

walking back to her seat after a good race

waiting for the final results...

Lauren won SECOND PLACE in the sibling races.

She was awarded a medal engraved "Pinewood Derby - Sibling 2nd place."
She's super proud.

Lauren's awesome day didn't end at the Pinewood Derby.
Later that evening she had a basketball game and played the best she ever has.

Early in the game she was fouled while shooting so she got 2 free throws.
She made the first and here she is after sinking the second.
You can't see her because she is behind number 11 who is jumping up and down in excitement for her.

I'm totally into these video montages.  They seem like a life-like bonus to the pictures so I'm including one of the Pinewood Derby pics.  Enjoy.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Extra Screen Time...a No Go!

I recently posted that I was testing a new way for L and T to earn screen time.
For every 10 minutes of time spent on an educational or Multiplication website I would grant 5 minutes of additional screen time for the weekend.

Well that test abruptly came to a halt today when I caught Lauren cheating the system.
(She's a smart cookie and I half-way thought this would happen...she's my daughter and all.)

At first she was trying her best to answer questions like these:

After a few minutes she was S-T-A-L-L-I-N-G to answer questions like these:
 She'd stop to watch what Tyler was doing and take some time to remark how easy it was compared to what she was doing.
Basically taking her sweet time.
I'm on to you girl!  I've been there.

Seriously I've been there.
I remember a time when I was in high-school and got in trouble with my Dad.  As punishment I was told to go shoot baskets in the backyard for 30 minutes.  Well to show him I went out there and walked around with the basketball while I counted to sixty....thirty times!
I'm not sure what I showed him but I sure thought it was something at the time.

So needless to say the extra screen time test didn't pass.
I will still grant some extra screen time for time spent on the educational websites but I will now use an internal equation to determine how much screen time.  The equation will be based on time, effort, attitude and My General Mood at the moment.
I have to keep these kids on their toes.  =)

What's a post without a picture of the kiddos?

Tyler playing Mario Super Sluggers on the Wii.

And Lauren all comfy and cozy on the sofa.
(doesn't her hair look like it's getting darker?)

Night All!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Old Videos are Fun

While I was uploading the latest video/photo montage to YouTube (surprise, surprise) I got distracted and spent an hour or so watching old YouTube videos of my little darlings.

You wanna see a few?

Lauren - ABCs


Hickory Dickory Dock

Tyler - ball player or sous chef

I could go watch these videos all night long.

I just might.

Earning and Artwork

We are in the testing phase of a new system to Earn extra screen time.
Lauren's teacher sent home some educational websites for her students to practice their multiplication and division.

I decided that for every 10 minutes L and T practice on the math websites they can earn 5 minutes of extra screen time to use on the weekend.
(Even though I initiated this I'm not sure how I feel about it - time will tell.)

Lauren earned 18 extra minutes for this weekend and Tyler earned 20.

Here are some pictures of Tyler practicing his addition.  He was pretty cute because when the numbers got higher he actually brought his toes out to count.  (I really wish I took a picture of that.)

He even agreed to a picture showing his face.

 After school Tyler had Art Club.
Today he brought home his artwork in a frame.
He wanted to hang it in his bedroom so he told Daddy exactly where he wanted it.
(photo by Tyler)

Looks Good Tyler.
(It's Tyler's name in cursive and its mirror image colored in with marker.  Tyler says it looks like a bug.  I say it looks pretty cool.)

And since I'm still excited about the new video/photo montage setting on my camera here's a video of our picture taking today.

(the background noise is Dr. Laura)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Old Photos are Fun

I am over a year late in printing out my children's photos and today I took a couple of hours to work on them.

Perhaps I'm a year late in printing out their pictures because I often get side-tracked.
But check out what I found!!

It's my old 1999 Acura Integra.
She was such a fun car.
 Funny story about this is that when I bought the 5-speed Acura I had no clue how to drive a 5-speed/stick-shift/manual etc. etc. 

My then boyfriend (now my husband) convinced me that I could do it and that I should do it.

I did eventually learn to drive the manual transmission but on the day I purchased it I had to have Matt drive it off the lot for me.

Since he drove my awesome new car I had to drive his car home.

Unfortunately, he did not drive his Toyota TRD that day.

He chose instead to drive the '69 Caddy which he and a friend used a Sawzall to cut the top off.
Yes, I drove this baby home from the car lot.

I drove my Integra until after we were married and planning to have a family.
When I was pregnant with Lauren we traded it in for a Yukon XL (because we GO BIG!)

But, even though we were a family-oriented family I was still a hot biker-chick with leather pants and all.
(until Matt and I decided that the motorcycles needed to go until the kids were grown)

Aren't old pictures so much fun?!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Weekly Menu 1-20-2013

 Weekly Menu


 and Basil Garlic Parmesan Popovers - 4 WW pts+
(I made 6 but didn't think to take a picture until the other 4 were bitten into.)
Both dishes were delishes.  ;)
Matt said he ate way too much so that means it was good.

And back to the Weekly Menu:
Monday:  Balsamic Chicken and Broccoli  (I will follow the recipe but use pork instead of the chicken.)
Tuesday:  Bean Enchiladas & nachos (chips topped with grated cheese and broiled - for the kids)
Wednesday:  Skinny Spinach and Artichoke Chicken & salad & fruit
Thursday:  Asparagus and Spaghetti & freezer biscuits & fruit
Friday:  Tuna Noodle Casserole & freezer veggies & fruit
Saturday:  Dinner Out after Lauren's 5pm basketball game.  (No fast food if I get my way!) 
Sunday:  Buffalo Chicken Cupcakes & green salad & fruit (I'm super excited about these.)

Thanks for reading my weekly menu.
Here's a bonus picture just for you.
The kids are exercising their Creativity on Kid Pix
(which does not count as a screen time...yet)
I looked for a link to Kid Pix but can only find the 3-D version.  We don't have this version but I may look into it.