Monday, April 25, 2011

An Easter Recap

I love Easter.

I love getting dressed up and decking my boys out in their adorable little suits.
I love the big family dinners.
I love the over-the-top church service at my church complete with choirs, special music, all the pageantry and extras that go into an EXTRAVAGANZA.
And let's be honest...I'm not opposed to the chocolate either.

But most of all... and by a BIG margin - I love celebrating the resurrection of my Savior, and I'm so very grateful for the ultimate sacrifice He made so I could have life, and that more abundantly!!  (John 10:10)

It's for these reasons, that I didn't mind the following rather insane schedule of my day:

5:30am - silently curse my alarm clock for waking me up and resentfully and resistantly get up, shower, and get myself ready. [YAWN]

6:30am - get the boys up, get them breakfast, get them dressed.  Take a moment to congratulate myself on making such adorable children!

Elijah - 11 months, Hayden - 3 years

8:00am - get to church with the whole family for my music practice as I'm leading worship and Dave is part of the team that morning too.

9:00am - pick up baby for family pictures only to have him throw up all down the front of me.   Thank you son.  And thank you baby wipes for saving the day, and my new dress!

9:15am - Succesfully take spit-up-free pictures.

10:00am - Church service starts.  And it's wonderful from beginning to end.  Have I mentioned how much I love my church?  TCC is the BEST!!

Worshiping with our awesome worship team
The kids choir - 1st grade thru 6th grade singing, "Children of God" by Third Day
Terry Lovenburg singing "He's Alive" by Don Francisco
The Iddy-Biddy Choir singing "Jesus was the little lamb"

 10:45am - watch Hayden's choir debut.

The GRANDmas performing "The Easter Song"
Pastor Garylee's Easter message

11:30am - Church service ends...pick up Elijah from nursery and send Hayden & EJ home with Dave to throw my green bean casserole in the oven while I stay to coordinate a wedding ceremony.  (Yep, that's right - there was a wedding at church on Easter.)  Fortunately it was simple, small and SHORT.

12:30pm - hurry home to change, finish my avocado corn salsa, grab my green bean casserole and 7-layer salad along with the rest of the family and head over to Tim & Cara's house for Easter dinner with 45 other wonderful people.  How do you seat 45 people for dinner?  Just like this!

8 tables, 46 chairs, four sets of china and a whole lotta silverware!

1:00pm - Breathe a huge sigh of relief upon arriving at Tim & Cara's house in ONE PIECE without forgetting anything and then almost die when I look at all the magnificent food prepared and realize how hungry I really am since I missed breakfast.

Hello Easter dinner... I think I love you!

1:30pm - be proud of myself for not overdoing it on portions with my Easter dinner and decide to treat myself to a little taste of dessert.

The dessert table, also known as the "death of me."

1:50pm - be ashamed of myself for completely losing control at the dessert table and eating myself into a food coma.  I blame Danielle Kendall!  Really? A white chocolate raspberry cheesecake, oreo cookies and cream pie, strawberry cheesecake AND key lime pie - seriously Danielle, what are you doing to me!!!!

2:30pm - ROLL MYSELF OUT THE DOOR to watch the kids do their Easter egg hunt.  Hayden & Blake were the smallest of the kids so they'd roped off a section just for them with a garden hose and they made out like bandits!  The older kids had a blast roaming around Tim & Cara's amazing property on the ultimate egg hunt.

Showing off their haul!

3:15pm - watch my baby boy (11 months old that day) FLIRT like crazy with a little girl close to his age.  Mentally note I'm gonna have to watch this one extra close!!

Elijah putting the moves on 9-month old Megan Kendall

3:30pm - watch with amazement as the heavens open and the rain starts POURING down.  Say a thank you prayer that it held out until AFTER the egg hunt.  

4:30pm - load up and head home.  Whine a little bit to the husband about being exhausted and am overcome with relief when he suggests you take a nap upon arriving home.

5:00pm - fall into bed and INSTANTLY PASS OUT!

6:15pm - wake up to the sound of the vacuum and walk out to find the world's BESTEST husband has cleaned the entire house as a surprise for me; including kitchen, kids room, living room AND even scrubbed the toilets.  I think I'll keep him!

The rest of the night was filled with family time, winding down and me constantly stopping to hug Dave and thank him again for being so wonderful, smiling over the events of the day and vowing to stay away from desserts for a very long time...

Well at least until the Butter Lover's Club on Tuesday!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

My little lamb

Today is Easter...and what a full and glorious day it has been.

So full and glorious that I'm EXHAUSTED - but until I can recap fully the day (look for it tomorrow) I'll leave you with a little glimpse into Hayden's first choir performance.

Our church has an Iddy-Biddy choir for the kids 3 years - kindergarten age.  Hayden turned 3 right AFTER Christmas, so today was his debut singing up front.  They've been learning it Wednesday  nights at church and we've been practicing the song at home so I knew that he had it down and I was excited to see how he'd do.

Zavery, Connor, Hayden, Blake Heikkila, Blake Halverson, Kyle & Chase

He did great during practice before church. Walked boldly up on stage with the other kids, did all his actions and sang loudly!  I was so proud!

The little lamb gone astray

And then came performance time.. and little man decided to sit and do his own actions.  Oh dear.

This little lamb did not "follow " as his song suggested...

He was still cute, but not doing what he was 'supposed' to be doing, which caused his cousin Blake (who was standing on the step above him) to keep yelling at him to stand up during the performance. And consequently caused a tumble down the stairs at the end of the song as Blake came to tell him off and was bumped off the step by another boy walking down.

I'm so sorry Blake.  Your cousin is a stubborn little lamb. 

It's a good thing it's eight months until Christmas choir - we've got some time to work on Hayden's "choir conduct."

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

How it all started...

Last night I was in a reminiscing mood.  Dave and I started discussing plans for our anniversary this year (six years of wedded bliss this June) and it got me thinking of how we began...

You see before there was this:
Family Photo - Fall 2010

Or this:

Our wedding - June 11, 2005

Or even this:

Getting engaged - December 17, 2004

There was this:

My brother and his best friend Dave circa 1996

Yep, I'm the girl that stole her brother's best friend!

Dave and Jay met in the 6th grade (1993-1994) and became instant friends.  All through jr. high, high school and into college they remained close (and still are).  From 8th grade year through their last years in high school Dave spent most weekends at our place, and even came on several family vacations with us. At least that's what I'm told...

You see, here comes the interesting part - I don't remember him AT ALL!  I can not recall even one instant of him being at our house or ever going on vacation with us.

This is what happens when your brother's best friend is FOUR YEARS younger than you.  And being that I was ahead in school, we were FIVE GRADE levels apart.

I'll help you do the math - when I graduated from high school Dave was finishing 7th grade.

Does that make me sound creepy? really does!

We won't even talk about this:

Spring 2000
Except to say FOR THE RECORD this is NOT a couple photo.
Oh far from it!

This was me chaperoning the homecoming court lunch my first year working at Country Christian School - and posing with the 2000 homecoming King.  I can't tell you what I was thinking in this picture, but it was definitely NOT, "Hey one day I think I'm gonna marry this guy." It was probably more along the lines of, "I hope they don't put this in the yearbook" - which they did!

It was not until Dave came back from his first year of college and joined the youth worship team with me that I noticed him as someone more than just "that kid that hangs out with my brother!" We became friends working in youth leadership and I fell in love with him watching him worship.

And now we lead worship at our church together as heads over the worship ministry and I just have to smile when I think about how blessed I am and how he is just the perfect one for me. 

So thanks Jay - thanks for being best friends with someone that needed to be in my life (even if I didn't notice he was in it for all those years)  and thanks for sharing him with me now.

And thanks babe for loving me even though I completely ignored you growing up!
I love you more than words can say!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tasty Tuesday - Roasted Broccoli

Have you ever roasted broccoli?  If the answer is no I encourage you to try it IMMEDIATELY.

I grew up eating all manners of roasted vegetables, but it wasn't until recent years that I discovered the AMAZING GOODNESS of roast broccoli.  It's a wonderful alternative to steaming it or stir-frying.

Broccoli florets, EVOO, Yellow bell pepper, Montreal steak seasoning, garlic powder, chili powder & salt!

I needed a quick easy meal tonight, so this is what I did for my vegetable side.  Fresh broccoli of course works wonderfully, but frozen did it for us tonight!

Start by putting your broccoli in a roasting pan or shallow dish.

I sliced up a yellow bell pepper, because 1.) I like the taste and the sweetness contrasts nicely with the broccoli flavor, 2.) it's a pretty color - and I think food needs color!!  I've used red peppers, frozen stir-fry mixes and also just skipped the addition altogether - all manners of veggies seem to work great with this. 

Now pour a little EVOO over it... not too much because you don't want to drown it, but just a good drizzle.

Then I season it with some strange seasonings... but trust me, the combinations works AMAZINGLY with the broccoli.  I start with Montreal Steak seasoning... for this amount of broccoli I used probably a good teaspoon but season to taste.  (I'm not much for measuring.)  I also sprinkled garlic powder and chili powder and some salt... probably 1/8 to 1/4 tsp of each.

Toss those all together so the seasonings and the oil evenly coat everything and then throw it in your oven at 400'F for about 25-30 minutes, or until the broccoli has reached your desired tenderness.  I like to broil mine for a couple minutes sometimes at the end to add a little char to the broccoli... oh so delicious!!!

Roasting your broccoli gives it a rich, almost nutty flavor that will BLOW YOUR MIND!!  The seasonings (bizarre as they may sound for broccoli) really compliment it well and when my 3-year old asks for seconds on the "bwock-wee" I know I've done something right!!

I served mine up with some grilled chicken and wild rice - BON APPETIT!!

Prep time: 5-mins, Cook time: 30 minutes

(measurements are approx, season to taste)
2 cups broccoli florets
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced (optional)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon of Montreal Steak Seasoning
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
Dash of salt

1.  Preheat oven to 400'F
2.  In a shallow dish or roasting pan, combine broccoli florets with bell pepper.  Drizzle EVOO over top and add steak seasoning, garlic powder, chili powder and salt.
3.  Toss all together until coated evenly and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until broccoli reaches desired tenderness.
4.  OPTIONAL:  Broil for last couple minutes to add char.  Serve immediately.

Monday, April 18, 2011

If a picture paints a thousand words...

...this picture would say, "It's time to switch to a sippy cup!"

Excited baby + bottle + shaking wildly = big mess!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Child of Mine

This child of mine loves bath time.  He loves to stand up next to the tub and watch the water filling up the bath, he gets all excited when I dump his toys in and even though he doesn't talk yet, his little squeals, grunts and body language BEG me to please put him in the water!!

"Put down the camera mom and put me in that water!"

This child of mine, with his beautiful green eyes just like his daddy's - doesn't have much patience for his mother taking photos of him when he could be IN that tub by now.  

This child of mine thinks he's part fish and would spend all night in that tub if I'd let him.  That smile of his just does me in, and I turn to mush and can't help smiling too, and not a little smile, but a big ear-to-ear toothy grin because he makes me that kinda happy!

This child of mine - I LOVE HIM!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Scrap Around the Clock - Pt. 2

I'm back...and I've slept - and I feel a little more like me!!!

So back to the recap, this past weekend was WONDERFUL.  It was full and crazy and I got little to no sleep - but it was totally worth it!!

I'm one of five in a committee (headed up by my darling sister) that hosts a twice-a-year scrapbooking event that goes for 24 hours straight.  We call it "Scrap Around the Clock." 

Jodi & Annie manning the registration table.

Serious scrappin' space!

Friday and Saturday our school auditorium was transformed from a gymnasium into a giant crop station.  We brought in SIXTY-FIVE 6-ft tables, we showed movies on our big screen, gave away THIRTY door prizes and THREE grand prizes, we provided bell-hop service for people's supplies courtesy of our school's Key Club and we hired a caterer to provide amazing meals for our registrants.  We had a licensed masseuse on-site doing massages, and had five vendors with beautiful tables selling scrapbooking supplies and also handmade crafts.  We also had our espresso cart open (that much scrapping necessitates caffeine in a big way) and then had regular coffee, tea, cider & hot chocolate available all 24-hours.  Add welcome packets filled with goodies, sleepover rooms, Wi-fi, and plenty of creative inspiration -  I think we put on a really fantastic event!!

Me hard at work - and I need to be, I'm a little behind.  That's 2008 photos for goodness sake!

Our "give-a-ways" - gorgeous 12x12 double page layouts that people could choose from when their ticket was drawn.

Sarah Nofziger, AKA Sarie June with her beautiful creations.  I bought a ring and have a handmade ruffle scarf coming too!

Christina - our faithful Creative Memories consultant

One of my favorite scrappin' companions, and fellow SATC staff member, Carmajo!

Jana, Cara, Tricia & Jodi

Tina, Kelly & Jennifer
Tracy, Janelle & Krista

Erica & Cindy

Brianna, Christina, Mandy, Heather & friend
And our Queen of the Crop Cassi and Princess of Quite-A-Lot Kourtney, winners of the auction package that provided free registration plus a bunch of extras.

Friday night our local newspaper in town came out and did an article on SATC which was pretty cool. We had 56 ladies come from all over Oregon, and even some from Washington State and several of the registrants drove more than 3-hours to come.   13 were first-timers who heard about it from word of mouth and EVERYONE said they'd be back in the Fall.

Come on October - I'm already looking forward to our next SATC.