Thursday, March 27, 2008

Happy Birthday Dear Cory!

Since we are leaving at O-dark-thirty in the morning I took Cory's one year bunny pictures today. He's standing up all by himself! And he's taken a couple steps towards us in the past week... and then leans and expects to be caught! We'll get there soon though!

I got our suitcases out of the storage shed the other day... and Cory thinks they are the best new toy. Tonight as I was going around getting ready he found his new throne. He was quite happy to just sit there for awhile, until he dropped one of his toys off the side. Then he didn't want to get off to get it!
Here we go Mom, I'm ready for vacation!

Happy Spring Break!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

It Is Spring, Right?

Yesterday I was walking around in short sleeves, this morning it's snowing. What is with this weather?!!! At least it was sunny for part of the day... although I hear this was only the first of three storms passing through... here's hoping they go away by Friday morning and don't dump snow in the passes since we're supposed to catch a plane at noon in Seattle!

Spring Break in Arizona here we come!

This past Saturday it was actually nice out and we took Cory outside. Brian set him in the grass (in his socks) and he didn't like it AT ALL. So he put his shoes on and then his feet were fine...

But he wouldn't move from where he was set because he refused to put his hands in the grass. It was cute and really funny watching him because he wanted to crawl and explore so bad!
What is that, Daddy?

I think this one is my favorite. Too cute, squatting down to check out the dead leaves.

Still not too sure about that grass stuff...

Sunday we all got dressed up for Easter, but missed church. Cory came down with another cold and at the time we should have gone he needed a nap and at the other service time we would have been too late to get a seat. Our church is always packed to overflowing on Easter.

So instead we went up to Leavenworth to visit my Grandma and then for burgers at Gustav's. Now I remember why I don't go there... over priced grease. Yum! Cory liked the fries though and we got a really nice family picture. Oh, and it was snowing then, too.

Happy Spring!


5 Minutes for Mom is giving away $200 to True Jeans. This would be nice although I might have to save it for the fall since I seem to be dropping clothes sizes like crazy. Finally all that baby weight is coming off!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Mama Got a KitchenAid!

Woo hoo! Now I have to figure out what I'm going to make to inaugurate it with... Can you tell I'm excited? I've wanted one for awhile and the opportunity presented itself last Saturday night. I didn't want to steal the limelight from Cory's birthday so I waited to share it with you all... but this has made my day week month!

This is the one and yes, I got it in Empire Kodiak Red.

Here's Cory helping Mama bid on it.

See the Christian school where my mom works has an auction every year and it's fun to go for the social life even if we can't afford don't buy anything. My mom's class always does a "cookbook" with the kids bringing in their favorite recipes and they have pictures with interviews with the "chefs". It's very elaborate and you know all the parents want it. Well, this year they paired it with this mixer (the Kodiak Red is because of the local high school colors, also where I graduated from).

One of the moms really wanted the cookbook this year since this is the last year either of her boys will be in my mom's class... but she already has a nicer mixer and her hubby said, "don't you go bringing that home now!". I was excited about this mixer, but since I don't know any of the kids in my mom's class didn't really care about the book. (and these one of a kind class items always go for a LOT) So when I heard she wanted it I offered to go in on it with her. We did and we won!

I didn't get a "deal" on it, but that's okay because it's supporting the school. Which in the end made $46,000! That's like double what they've ever made at an auction! $11,000 came in for the scholarship fund, which is new, but that's an awesome contribution! So exciting!

Now, if only I'd had the mixer on Saturday when I was making double batches of cupcakes and cream cheese frosting for Cory's birthday in my little tiny kitchen...

Technically the mixer was mine by the time I got to the frosting, but I came home early to put Cory to bed and Brian brought it home with him at the end. I didn't want to start making icing at 11pm so I did it with my little hand mixer. And got green frosting all over me and the kitchen!

But I was proud of my handiwork. Here's the froggy man's cake!

And the extra cupcakes. We had 3 dozen total. After the party there were a dozen left... and they were gone by Wednesday. I have to say, cream cheese frosting is awesome! ;)

Monday, March 17, 2008

1st Birthday Party!

Technically 2 weeks early, but when this is the time all the grandparents can be present... that's when it happens!

The Froggy Man's Birthday!

Mmm, I like candles!

I'm not so sure about this frosting stuff...

Mama, get it off, it's slimy!

I'm not sure I like the taste either...

Oh, okay, now I've got the good stuff!

All gone, more please!

See Grandpa, it's so good I have to eat the plate!

I get lots of cool presents.
Watch out Hollywood!

I have friends at my party
and I share my balloons.

Grandpa is just plain silly!

Actually, so is great-grandma!

The party was a great success. More pictures to follow, including the froggy man birthday cupcake cake, but I'm exhausted from this weekend and going to bed! The guest at the party from farthest away was Auntie Allison, who came all the way from Boston!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Wild Crazy Weekend Update

It's not short. It's an update. I'm still recovering from the craziness!

Last Wednesday I left for Portland. Apparently I have a lead foot... because I made it to The Dalles in just over 4 hours including stopping to feed Cory lunch. (Hi Mom and Dad) It was nice though because it was a beautiful day and there was hardly anyone on the road. Plus there's a detour going on in the Columbia Gorge so I drove on the Washington side up high on the cliff and it was an amazing view! Sometimes you just need a new perspective, no?

Stopped to visit Cory's great-grand parents in The Dalles for a few hours.

They always feed us well. Plus Grandpa gave me a whole bag of jelly beans... and then proceeded to tell me that he had a candy dish full as well... bad idea! I ate most of them that afternoon. He wouldn't take the bag back though so I passed it on to the other great-grands the next day!

Got to our lovely friends Jason and Amber's in the evening and stayed up way too late talking. (which we did every night)

Thursday I drove down to Newberg to see the other set of great-grand parents.

Cory ate the food in the dining room like a pro... I think he even ate more than Grandpa for dinner! ;) He also found the bells they had and loved the fact that he could bang them against the door to get even more noise. These are "official" camel bells from Saudi Arabia!

(side note: how crazy is this? apparently I am going to get to visit this mystical land in about a year! Wow.)

Another random thing, driving back up to Portland I needed to stop and get some glasses at Bed Bath and Beyond. I have a number on my cell phone for Free 411. I managed to remember on the 3rd try which suburb the store was in, get the number, and find out if they were still open. Then I asked if they had my style of glasses in stock and if they could put them at the front counter for me. Which made my trip to the store way shorter than it would have been. Amazing things these cell phones. How did we live without them?

Friday after dropping Amber at her doctor's appointment (3 weeks until the baby's due!) I decided I was going to wash their floors for them. Picture this. Hardwood floors. Months of remodeling. 2 large greyhounds in rainy (read muddy) Portland. And Miss Amber not being able to really do housework. Equals me having to change the water in the mop bucket about a dozen times. I felt really good when it was done... until the dogs came back in and the next day it was muddy again! No offense Amber, but I don't think I could ever do dogs and hardwood floors together! ;)

Then we went to lunch at this funky little Mexican place. Can you all tell me since when does picadillo (shredded beef) equal hamburger with raisins, potato chunks, and some other thing I can't remember at the moment? It was weird. So much for my taco salad. Oh, and they had raw onions in the lettuce. Ugh.
Next door was a kids re-sale shop with a hyper opinionated pregnant lady ticked off because there were guys tarring the roof and smelling the place up. Crazy!

We finally made it to the mall (Lloyd Center for those of you who care) to meet Gina and Addison for about an hour and use my 20% off coupons at The Children's Place and Gymboree. I got some awesome cute shirts for Cory to wear at some special occasions coming up! Yes, there will be pictures.

This now put us at almost 5pm and we still had to get back to Amber's house, feed Cory, and get out to the airport hotel where the Discovery Toys conference was by 6pm. Even with Jason offering to watch Cory we didn't make it.

I can never be on time for anything. I wish it weren't true, but it is.

Poor Jason had quite the evening with Cory. He was fine until eating dinner he managed to choke on his water and got freaked out. Jason called me to ask how he should comfort him and I told him to pick him up and asked if he needed us to come home. No... but when we got home we discovered that he had been walking with him for the better part of an hour... and he had noodle arms! Part of the problem was that Cory had had about an hour nap all day. Not a great combination. Welcome to parenthood Jason! He mentioned he was glad babies don't start at 21 pounds...

Saturday morning we didn't make it to the 9am start. We had Cory with us and he did pretty well. He finally fell asleep in my new Ergo baby carrier, but we woken up when the lady finished her talk and everyone clapped with their little plastic clapping hands. Weirdness galore!

Cory likes the balloon we brought home from the decorations!

We were supposed to have an hour and 15 minutes for lunch. We had 45. Not quite enough time to get back to Jason and Amber's for lunch when it's 20 minutes each way. So we went, I fed Cory while they packed me a lunch, and I turned around and drove back. Cory took a good nap and then after the conference we met at the new IKEA for dinner! Those places rule! But seriously there's almost so much stuff it's too overwhelming to even know where to start. Too many choices.

One really sad thing, it was my mom's birthday and I was hoping to get her some yummy almond pastries they have... but I got all the way to the Bistro at the end to discover they don't carry them. Apparently this is a corporate store and the one in Seattle where I've always gotten them is a franchise so they carry different things. I was so bummed.

Sunday I actually got to sleep in because Cory was tired and went back to sleep in the morning. Yay! But that meant that by the time we got all packed up and back to the mall it was already after 1pm and that was my leave-Portland goal time. Ugh. We did manage to get out of there pretty fast going to 5 stores to get things I needed. (this is what happens when you live in the boonies, going to the city means you have to go to the mall!) So 4pm and I'm finally leaving only to get to Troutdale (read - cheapest gas around) and find that half the pumps are closed because they only have one attendant on duty. Stupid Oregon rule that won't let you pump your own gas. It literally took me half an hour to get gas.

I made it home about 10:15 with no major mishaps other than one semi-truck on the detour portion of the road who thought it would be okay to drive in my lane on a corner and almost hit me head on. I really wished there'd been a police officer there... I had a bit of adrenaline going for awhile!

Hard to believe that was only 5 days... And now I am mostly recuperated...

Is anyone still reading? :) Congratulations. I think you have just made it through the longest blog post in history!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Contests Galore!

The winner of my Tyson Chicken Giveaway, Danielle, has contacted me. Thanks to everyone who entered.

Let's see, there are so many fun things going on around the blogosphere this week... the least of which is the Blog Party at 5 Minutes for Mom!

Then, there's my new favorite book review site, The Friendly Book Nook! I need to start keeping a list of all the books from their site I want to read! It actually helps that the mom in Costa Rica was our school principal's wife when I was down there way back in 2001! They're having a March contest to get the word out!

An Island Life is giving away $300 to Mommy Tags. You have to visit the Mommy Tags site and find a favorite piece of jewelry and leave a comment at An Island Life. But the stuff is so neat!

simple is giving away $100 to BabyScholars. All you have to do is leave a comment.

In honor of her new book, Sister to Sister, (which I have won a copy of and can't wait to read!) Virginia Smith is giving away a $500 shopping spree! Go here to enter and would you pretty please enter my email as the "referer" so I can have an extra entry? Hey, I told you about it, right? :) Thanks! (teacherkrista at gmail dot com)

You can also go here to enter to win a Bed and Breakfast stay sponsored by HarperCollins in honor of DiAnn Mills new book Awaken My Heart. This one I haven't read yet and my library doesn't have it... I can't wait!

Last but not least... you can win $100 to Toys R Us from just for writing a post on your own blog. That would be fun, and I can think of a lot of things that aren't toys I could get there (hello, BabiesRUs!).

Now, go forth and contest!

Blog Party!

Due to the fact that I have been out of town since Wednesday and I'm just not quite together enough to have a post done ahead of time...

It's time for the Ultimate Blog Party!

Ultimate Blog Party 2008

So, if you are new to my blog, here's the intro:
I'm a stay-at-home mom, housekeeper, wanna-be chef, and crafter extraordinaire (at least according to my husband!).

I run a Discovery Toys business and that's where I was this weekend, at the Spring Kick-Off! There are tons of new toys and great old ones so check them out if you have a minute. (and email me if you want to order anything)

I live in the Great Northwest and it is finally spring here! My irises are popping up and my roses are showing little buds. It was warm enough for me to go outside in my bare feet this morning and get all the dead blooms off. I know, I'm not a gardener so please excuse the lateness of that activity!

This blog is where I write about my life, mostly that having to do with my son, Cory! He'll be a year old at the end of this month and this is update central for my in-laws and friends who live far away.

I hope you come back often, but for now, go visit all the other party bloggers!

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Free Chicken Anyone?

The winner was #14, Danielle. Congrats! If I don't get a response within 2 days I will pick a new winner!

Edit: Please don't forget to leave your email address or your entry will not count!

It's time for my own little giveaway!

Here's the scoop. A couple months ago I won 10 coupons for free Tyson chicken from Momsational. I used half of them and then my local Fred Meyer quit carrying Tyson brand. And they were the only store around that did. (we are kinda spoiled around here anyway because Foster Farms is darn good chicken so that's what our stores carry)

So... my loss is your gain!

If you live in a place where your stores carry Tyson brand chicken then please leave me a comment with an email address.

I have 5 coupons left. If I get more than 30 comments I will pick 5 winners. Otherwise I will pick one winner and you will get all 5.

This contest will be open until Sunday, March 9th at 9pm Pacific time.

Please note that these coupons are only good for fresh Tyson chicken usually found in the meat section. i.e., you can't get the prepared frozen bags of chicken. You can get one package up to $10 worth. I could never find a package that was worth $10, but if you can, go for it!


There's also a neat contest going on over at simple for a fun Animal Upon Animal stacking toy by Haba. This contest is sponsored by Kangarooboo.