Thursday, May 29, 2014


Our first MOM ADVENTURE of 2014

Today we had a great day being out and active!  Our sweet 7 year old has been giving me cute notes this week asking me to take her to a nearby park.  Today we went and enjoyed the sunshine!  While we sat on our picnic blanket and ate our lunch she said with a smile, "Mom, I just love to be out of the house!"

Mac and Cheese Deluxe

Mac and Cheese Deluxe

7 oz. ziti with lines
2 c. cottage cheese
1 c. sour cream
1 egg
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. pepper
8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese (2 c.)

Cook ziti, drain well. Combine cottage cheese, egg, salt, and pepper.Add shredded cheese. Stir in cooked ziti. Turn into greased 9x9-inch baking ban. Sprinkle with paprika. Bale in moderate oven (350 degrees) for 45 minutes. Serves 6.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Hearty Black Bean Soup

1 cup tomato salsa
2 (15 1/2 ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon lime juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Sour cream


1.  Heat the salsa in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, for about 5 minutes. Stir in the beans and broth.  Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer the soup, covered, for 15 minutes.

2.  Let the soup cool slightly, then ladle half of it into a food processor or blender and puree it.  Return pureed soup to the pot.  Stir in the lime juice and chopped cilantro and heat the mixture through.  Serve the soup warm, topped with a dollop of sour cream, if desired.  Makes 4 servings.

This is my favorite quick, easy, healthy lunch.  I just put all of the ingredients in my Vita-mix blender, put it on the hot soups setting and we have lunch hot and ready in about 5 minutes!

Peanut Butter Balls

This is a favorite addition to the kids lunches, a great after school snack, or I have also made peanut butter balls to go along with our morning smoothie.  We found this recipe in the Friend Magazine in August of 2004, and it has been a favorite ever since!

Peanut Butter Balls

1/2 cup honey
1 1/2 cups powdered milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
choice of topping: shredded coconut, shelled sunflower seeds, or chopped nuts
  1. 1. 
    Combine the first three ingredients and form into small balls.
  2. 2. 
    Roll the balls in your choice of topping.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Happy Summer!

I can hardly believe that another school year has flown by!  Today we have several awards assemblies at the school and our daughter is graduating from elementary!  

On another exciting note, "Power of Moms" is featuring an article I wrote about our favorite summer tradition.  Stop by their site and read it today!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Evidence of Children

Two and a half years ago we moved to a new State and bought a brand new house.  With a background in Interior Design I planned how the furniture would be arranged and thought through decorating details.

While moving in my 9 year old daughter wanted to help decorate and put a ceramic brown cat with colorful polka dots, that she had painted, in the bathroom next to the sink.  She had a very difficult time moving and I didn't have the heart to tell her that it wasn't the decoration that I would have chosen for the bathroom, so the cat stayed there.  Just recently I was cleaning the bathroom and had moved the ceramic cat to clean.  My daughter who is now very much an older and mature preteen said, "Oh, mom I am passed the cat, you don't have to keep it on the bathroom counter."

I think she was a bit surprised when I started to cry.  As the tears flowed she came in and gave me a hug.  I explained that I was crying because she was growing up.  I was crying because I would miss so many things about her being kid.  She is still has many years at home, but I didn't realize how quickly stages pass and time marches on.

I longed for the days when she would be old enough for me to buy her American Girl dolls because I love dolls.  I didn't realize how quickly those days would come and how soon they would be over.  My oldest son has enjoyed building with Legos.  It seems that nearly every Birthday and Christmas for the past several years I have heard about all the amazing Lego sets he was hoping to get as a gift.  Christmas came this year and I didn't hear about Legos.  I felt sad realizing that children really do grow up.  They out grow their ages and stages.  

The point is, when I look around my house my favorite things are not the drapes and the centerpiece on the table, or even the new rug.

My favorite accessories to our home are the ceramic cat next to the bathroom sink.

The note left on the fridge.

The art work that was carefully created.

The collection of Rubik's cubes on the nightstand.

The Christmas globe in January.

I love all of these random details throughout the house that are the evidence that we have children.  Children that much to my dismay will grow up and leave someday.  Children that will out grow ceramic cats and stop asking for Legos.

This week I want to find joy in the looking at the little things.  

The baby swing in the corner.

The black box full of books.
The well used children's books on the shelf.
The piano books left out for practicing.

The menu board written in 10 year old hand writing and smudged with tiny finger prints.

The art projects.

The randomly kicked off socks.

The messy stacks of papers. 

. . . because in reality these little evidences of children are my favorite accessories! 

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