Monday, June 30, 2008

The Peak of Good Living

We love Apex. Saturday night we went to one of the Concerts at the Train Depot (where you never know what kind of band is going to play and the only advertisements are wooden signs on the corners of Salem Street and Laura Duncan reading "Free Concert Tonight"). It ended up being a Brass Band this time and the kids had a blast. There was even a little ballet performance at the very beginning, a section set up with sidewalk chalk for the kids, and a little cart selling snow cones to raise money for Apex High School Band. The weather was perfect and it was one of those quaint, peak of good living moments. Other highlights included some chalk face painting and showing of the bloomers by Meadow and a snow cone accident where Meadow squeezed her paper cone too hard and it pushed everything onto the ground. I tried to stop her which made her squeeze harder resulting in the loudest scream I have ever heard in my life (I am surprised the band didn't stop) and more donations to the snack cart. Also, I think over the course of the hour and a half Parker ran the mile between the chalk, the band dancing area and our blanket. :)

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Fluffy Sugar Cookies

Our neighbor returned a plate of ours with sugar cookies on it (her rule is never return a plate empty...that's a nice rule don't you think?) Anyway, I think they were heavenly, melt in your mouth, fluffy sugar cookies. They were so good that I had to save Greg two to taste even though he was out of town. It was very hard to do with them staring at me on the counter for a day and a half but I resisted ;) Here is the recipe:

1 c. white granulated sugar
1 c. powdered sugar
1 c. oil (anything but peanut - I use canola)
1 c. butter, softened
1 t. salt
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla

Beat and mix above ingredients together using mixer. Then add 1 t. baking soda and 4 c. flour (all-purpose is fine; I have used half all purpose and half cake flour on occasion). Drop by rounded spoonfuls into granulated sugar to coat (it's normal for the dough to be very soft, almost like marshmallow creme). Transfer to ungreased baking sheet and flatten slightly (they expand minimally so you can put them rather close together).

Bake 8-10 minutes at 375 degrees until cookies look set. Cool on wire rack. Frost with vanilla cake frosting.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Swimming Cousins

Parker and his Cousin Laney are taking swimming lessons together this summer and have been having a great time. It is nice having cousins so close by!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Dead Sea Scrolls at Museum of Natural Sciences

2000 Years in the Judean Desert
Six Months in Raleigh
June 28 - December 28
Reservations required, buy tickets in advance

"The Dead Sea Scrolls is an exhibition that tells a story that is beyond words, beyond time and beyond our imaginations. Experience the most remarkable archaeological discovery of the 20th century – the oldest surviving manuscripts of the Hebrew Bible, known to Christians as the Old Testament."

To read more go to

Thanks for the info Ali ;)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice

Raise your hand if you had a pair of these type of shoes when you were a little girl. Mine were pink. Meadow LOVES hers and we can't believe how well she can walk/run in them and how she is drawn so naturally to all things girl.

Another Sunday before church photoshoot


So I have been on a smores kick ever since I accidentally had all the ingredients to make them. A six pack of Hershey bars was on sale for 2 bucks and I couldn't pass that up. Then I found the graham crackers and marshmallows in the pantry and for three days straight I have made one. I don't know if it is the summer time or what, but I just want to eat them every day. No I am not pregnant. (Ali - have you made the GF Mrs. Robins Mock Graham crackers before? They are pretty yummy!) So...what are YOUR food kicks right now? I am going to try not to have these ingredients in the house at the same time again for a long time. I think this diagram is wrong. Isn't the chocolate supposed to go under the marshmallow?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Chuck Norris Facts

Greg stumbled upon this website and we got a big kick out of it and wanted to share...for more go to

If you have five dollars and Chuck Norris has five dollars, Chuck Norris has more money than you.

There is no 'ctrl' button on Chuck Norris's computer. Chuck Norris is always in control.

Apple pays Chuck Norris 99 cents every time he listens to a song.

Chuck Norris can sneeze with his eyes open.

Chuck Norris can eat just one Lay's potato chip.

Chuck Norris is suing Myspace for taking the name of what he calls everything around you.

Chuck Norris destroyed the periodic table, because he only recognizes the element of surprise.

Chuck Norris can kill two stones with one bird.

Chuck Norris does not sleep. He waits.

Chuck Norris is currently suing NBC, claiming Law and Order are trademarked names for his left and right legs.

Chuck Norris is the reason why Waldo is hiding.

Chuck Norris counted to infinity - twice.

There is no chin behind Chuck Norris’ beard. There is only another fist.

When Chuck Norris does a pushup, he isn’t lifting himself up, he’s pushing the Earth down.

Chuck Norris is so fast, he can run around the world and punch himself in the back of the head.

Chuck Norris can lead a horse to water AND make it drink.

Chuck Norris doesn’t wear a watch, HE decides what time it is.

Chuck Norris can slam a revolving door.

Chuck Norris does not get frostbite. Chuck Norris bites frost

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could Chuck Norris? ...All of it.

Chuck Norris doesn't actually write books, the words assemble themselves out of fear.

Chuck Norris CAN believe it's not butter.

The grass is always greener on the other side, unless Chuck Norris has been there. In that case the grass is most likely soaked in blood and tears.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The week in pictures

Parker had one of his worst allergic reactions this week. I took him with me visiting teaching and there was no food even around. The kids were all playing with toys, I guess there could have been traces of something on a toy like peanut butter or something. No cats or anything. He started rubbing his eyes and breaking out in hives and not a minute later his eyes were swelling up. So we left and went home, took benadryl, gave him a bath, put in eye drops, called the allergist etc. The benadryl worked, but if the swelling had continued they told me to use the epi-pen. The swelling went down slowly, It took about 24 hours for him to look "normal." Sigh. It was a little scary. He was a trooper though. I know it scared him too, He said "Will my eyes go back to normal?" The only other thing the allergist said was that sometimes plastic blow up toys come coated in a powder that causes some children to react this way (they had been wrestling a big blow up dinosaur). Parker is doing great and is back to normal.

The next day we drove to Hickory and had a really fun long weekend visiting Greg's parents. Here are some highlights...

They babysat so we could go to the CURE concert in Charlotte with Greg's cousins Jason and Kirk. It was awesome and they played for THREE HOURS! They have a new album being released in a couple of weeks and they played some songs from that and alot of oldie goldies from the 80's and 90's as well. They sounded amazing. This has been Greg's favorite band since he was 14 so it was fun for me to go with him and pretend inwardly that we were still in highschool and that I was his girlfriend! hahaha! He even bought me a t-shirt. What a nice boyfriend.

The boys had a boys night and had a blast at the Hickory Crawdads baseball game. Parker lasted 7 innings. Ok only 4 watching the game but they had a lot of fun things for kids to do there. The girls went out to dinner and had some fun of our own at the mall. Meadow got some new church shoes. She had her heart set on a sequined silver and pink pair 4 sizes too large for her that she clomped around in for a while before we settled on a nice black pair with a butterfly buckle. There were some pairs she refused to even try on. She knows what she likes.

On Father's Day, Greg and I took the kids to a fun park that had a little creek running through it to let Grandma and Grandpa take a nap in peace and quiet for a change. The kids had the best time and got really wet and dirty. Parker met a little friend named Jack and they had a great time being boys together. Afterwards, since this was all very spur of the moment and we had no dry clothes, we had to strip them down in the van and they thought it was great fun to ride back to Grandma's house practically naked. Ok totally naked, except we did have a diaper for Med.

We also visited the science center where we witnessed a sting ray jump out of the water which Greg magically caught on film. Parker enjoyed petting the sting rays. Meadow wasn't so into that.

Parker also loved riding the 4 wheeler around Granpa Glenn's yard. We enjoyed getting to listen to Parker yell Woooooooo!! repeatedly.

Grandma Debbie and Greg had fun trying to make Parker's hot dog more exciting complete with sea weed. Parker looked at the creation and said "I just want a regular hot dog." I said " That is a regular hot dog... see" and put the hot dog back into it's original shape. Parker said "No, because it still has legs and eyes." So we made him a regular non-threatening one. It was a little scary looking...

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Music to my ears

We have a little book with pictures of babies feeling a certain way, happy, sad, angry, silly, sleepy etc. We read it at bedtime alot. Meadow does a new sweet little thing recently, she tells us when she is happy. I love it.

Last night Meadow would not go to sleep (she usually goes down between 8 and 8:30) around 8:30 I gave up and got her out of her crib. She was still looking pretty alert so I strapped her in the jogging stroller and away we went. After jogging we walked for awhile and she pointed out the moon and we talked about the moon and then she would look up and around when she heard birds singing and we talked about that. We talked about the bumpy dirt we drove over on a construction lot where the sidewalk wasn't finished. Then she started giggling and said "happy" then she giggled some more and said "happy" two more times. I said "Are you happy? I am happy too." We walked until the sun sank under the horizon and the bonus result was a sleeping Meadow. :) The other good news is that since I started jogging two weeks ago I have lost 3 of the 10 extra pounds I have left over from little miss Meadow and I think I just feel better in general, a little more energy...

Hot fun in the Summertime

Here are the kids in their latest Summer fashions from Target. :)

We got the little pool there too and it was way to hot out on the grass so we filled it up in the shade of the house. While they played I stole buckets of water and watered all of the plants and the vegetable garden since it has been so hot. We have little green tomatoes growing and squash flowers blooming - how exciting! I can't tell if the green peppers are doing anything yet...

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Surprises in the Mail

Meadow loved her Crocks from Grandma and Grandpa Winters complete with Mickey, Minnie and Dora Jibbits and Parker loved his new Buzz light year and Pirate Jibbits. Both My mom and Greg's mom send sweet little letters and coloring pages and pictures of the things the kids are interested in (currently Star Wars, Super Heroes, the Hulk, puppies and animals) to the kids that they love getting in the mail. Thanks Grandmas and Grandpas - we love you!

Monday, June 2, 2008

To the Zoo

We decided last night that we better hit the zoo before it gets too hot and before school lets out. It was a beautiful day and in the afternoon it felt like we had the place to ourselves. Meadow especially enjoyed the elephant, turtles and seals. Parker especially loved pretending to track elephants in the helicopter and a new 3-D sponge bob ride where the audience gets "thrown up" on and a sleeping polar bear who "is like Burble from the Danger Rangers!" Greg loved watching Meadow's terror that turned into excitement every time a seal swam past in the underwater viewing section and watching Parker pretend to be every animal we just got done seeing. I loved watching the kids have a great time too - of course, the bonuses of the day were: Getting to read some of the new Stephanie Meyer book "The Host" on the way up and back (Thanks Robin!!!), getting to take a nap in the van after lunch when they both conked out, and overhearing a conversation between two girls who were probably 9 or 10 discussing whether they would rather have animal poop on their hands or in their hair. They decided their hands because it would be easier to wash off. I think they made the right decision.