It's a song we sing with our kids and it goes a little something like this...

"I love you (insert your name here),
Oh yes I do,
I love you (insert your name here),
this much is true,
when you're not with me, I'm blue
Oh, (insert your name here) I love you
Oh, (insert your name here) I love you!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

{a penny saved}

have you checked out amazon mom?  or amazon student?  for moms, you get 30% off diapers and wipes and get free 2 day shipping.  that is a pretty sweet deal and ends up being cheaper than buying from costco!  the only catch is that with your subscription, you have the products sent at regular intervals that you choose- so say a box of diapers a month or whatever. 

dave ramsey would totally approve.  actually he would probably say i should potty train my kid and not buy diapers at all.  someone should tell owen.

side note...we got a Christmas card from dave ramsey.  yeah...with his family picture.  crazy!

Friday, January 28, 2011

{heart attack}

i am a room mom for aiden's class and always on the hunt for fun gift ideas to show our appreciation to our kids' teachers.  i am LOVING these valentine's day ideas on one charming party
via little lovely.  so many creative ideas if you are having a valentine's party (which i am not...but kinda wish i was!)

i am absolutely gonna steal borrow the *heart attack* idea.  You have the kids write something kind about their teacher on a heart and then tape them all to the door, desk, etc. just trying to decide if it would be cuter to have the kids hang their own valentine's (handing out tape as the kids enter the building), or collecting the hearts in advance and making a garland to hang inside the class like this. 

guess i'll have to see how far in advance i have my act together!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

{breakfast for dinner}

for real...every wednesday night.  you could probably set your calendar by it.

inage via martha stewart
it's like a win, win, win.  i really don't like to cook so i am totally down with cheesy scrambled eggs, turkey bacon and some pancakes.  if i am really feeling sassy, we may have blueberry, chocolate chip or pumpkin pancakes.  i may even put cream cheese in the delish!  breakfast foods are by far my favorite.

what kids doesn't want syrup for dinner...seriously.

and breakfast for dinner totally saves the cheap. usually if i can make dinner for $10/night i am feeling pretty good.  this is way less and helps make up for the pricier nights.

ok...maybe it's not really a win for mike.  or maybe it is as i think about it.  he plays basketball on wed nights so he never eats before he goes.  cold eggs...not so good.  but...totally an excuse to eat cereal for dinner without me being irritated that he was too lazy to heat up whatever leftovers we did have.  this may be a win, win, win, win.'s what's for dinner.

Friday, January 21, 2011

{another snow day}

truth be told, i was thrilled to have another snow day.  i layed in bed till 9am and loved every minute of it!  i worked on projects around the house and owen was so excited to play with someone other than me.  i'm pretty sure mike wasn't sharing my sentiments when he trudged off to catch the train to work with 8" of snow on the ground. poor guy...
snow has covered all but a foot of the fence

he could not stop eating snow.  pretty sure he never even looked to see if it was clean.

this is how people mark their parking spaces once they shovel out.  classy, huh?!
there is something about snow falling that makes me want to bake.  mike jokes his waist line grows with each inch that falls. owen and i made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies with a recipe from my friend jen.  seriously, these are THE BEST cookies ever.  try them...for real.  she gave me the recipe at church on the back of a kids coloring sheet.  i should probably recopy this.

3/4 c. butter, softened
2/3 c. sugar
3/4 c. brown sugar
cream above together well, then add:
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
beat well and then add:
3/4 t. baking soda
3/4 t. baking powder
1 1/4 c. flour
mix until just blended and then add:
2 c. oatmeal
mix and then stir in
1 c. chocolate chips

i use a large pampered chef scoop & then squish the dough down a bit.  the cookies are 4" across.  that way you can say you only ate one.  ;)
bake at 375 and take out when they just barely start to turn brown.

have you tried fair trade yet?  we got fair trade sugar at costco for like a dollar more than regular...and it's organic too.  buy fair trade whenever you can.  fair trade = good thing

(yes, he is wearing his bathing suit and it's 15 degrees outside)

we also made snow cream for the first time and weren't disappointed. heather recommended it and the kids thought it was so fun! we mixed 1 c. cream, 1/2 c. sugar and a splash of vanilla together and then mixed that in to a big bowl of ice cream (preferably clean)

 so much for eating low sugar.  maybe tomorrow...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


his daddy is gonna cry too when he sees that football...

how do packer fans end up with a bears football anyway?  (eat your heart out uncle tony.)

note to self~ add football to donate pile...before the BIG game!

Sunday, January 16, 2011


the little man has been sick for days with a really high fever.  as much as i hate when the kids are sick, i love the extra cuddling.  (he even snuck into our bed for the last three nights...not as much sleeping going on as tossing and turning.)  hopefully, he is on the mend and we can reclaim our bed!

and since we haven't been able to leave the house much, we busted open one of the kids Christmas gifts.  we decided this was the year they could probably start playing some of the board games we played as kids.  we started with trouble (they couldn't get enough of that dice popper thingy), and still have uno and skipbo jr. to try out.  fun times!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

{nor'easter-1, boston-0}

we took a beating yesterday with upwards of 18" of snow.  it was crazy...beautiful and a huge mess all at the same time.

i loved that the kids had a snow day!  i loved sleeping in, hanging out in pj's all day (even under our snow clothes), baking cinnamon rolls, having "crafternoon" with aiden and owen, hasbro family game night on the wii (don't play life if you're in a hurry), and watching mike take care of blowing out the neighbors.  we don't have a snowblower, but our neighbor has two and he is SO good about sharing his extra.  i love that about our neighborhood...people tend to take care of each other like that.

top of the van

she lasted maybe 20 minutes. (notice the 2 scarves...she insisted that would keep her warm.)

he stayed out with mike close to 5 hours.  king of the hill!

cheap, blue gloves.  daddy will now be known as papa smurf.

this tree started the day out cone shaped.

not good when even the plow gets stuck

on a side note, miles told me today that i am too old to have any more babies "cause your boobies don't have any more milk."  i'll keep that in mind son...thanks!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

{if we had sent Christmas cards}

these are the pics we would have used.  tyra bleek is a fantastic local photographer who happens to attend REUNION.  she was so very patient with the kids...the boys would not cooperate at all!  "miles of smiles" was in rare form and wouldn't hardly look at her.

what i love most is that this is our life right now...the stage we are in.  kids running everywhere, no one paying attention to what's going on, ticklish kids who love carrying big sticks and being distracted by acorns.  she captured it beautifully and i will treasure these images for years to come.  thanks tyra!

some of my favorites...

Monday, January 10, 2011


have you heard this yet?

it's amazing...full of awesome, original songs by REUNION artists.  i'm so proud to call these guys friends!

download it from itunes'll love it.  or wait till later this winter and you can buy a cd at REUNION.  all proceeds go to benefit our Advent Conspiracy partners: living water international, kim's project, roxbury youth works and a church plant in paris, france.

i can hardly wait to hear their next ep...already in the works.  these guys are SO talented!

Friday, January 7, 2011

{a favorite Christmas gift}

Aiden worked on this gift for months...literally.  her class started it back in sept and she was so excited to give it to us (sweetly wrapped in homemade stamped wrapping paper!)  we will proudly hang it in the kitchen.  i'll have to remember this idea for next year when advent conspiracy rolls around and we are looking for gifts to make for family.

a few of my fav months...

and that sweet first grade it!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

{Christmas 2010}

Christmas break was a whirlwind this year.  We drove over 3000 miles to Il, WI, back to IL, back to WI, then home.  Phew!  Loved every minute of it though and wished it was for longer.

Some fav pics...

catching snowflakes


g'ma donated some tealights for eyes & a taper for the nose

Aiden insisted on a dried hydrangea on top to make it a girl

Mike & the kiddos

Loving the cousins!

It's all about Toys Story 3 for Owen

Miles loved his new puffer vest so much he slept in it!
Aunt Sue & Uncle Eric

Loved hanging out with cousin Chris & Amy!

Mike found an old toboggan in the barn

I swear they were watching us sled...we were pretty amusing!

Sledding (Can he even see?)

Aiden & cousin Sydney

dad Brown's vintage beanie

Uncle Eric loading up kids on sleds.  (He can't do this without sticking out his tongue...swear.)

Give that kid some lunch

Notice the pickpocket during a wrestling match

He cannot get enough of this stuff...and can quote movie lines.

Owen is OBSESSED with Jessie


Our Hero

Attempt at family pic

More accurate

a workout!

This about sums it up...

PS.  I really have no idea what I am doing and just spent an unreal amount of time trying to get these pics in chronological order and the spacing right.  For the life of me, I can't figure it out.  Technical difficulties...uurrgh!