Saturday, December 19, 2009

Nice Rack

I'm on a roll here... take 2 weeks to post and I put 3 on in one day! This one is kinda lame, but was proud of my work. The boys didn't really have a place to put their jackets and I was tired of always being the one who put them up and took them out of the closet... and then when they were all wet, we just threw them in the laundry room. So I went to Target and picked up a rack and cheap shoe shelf, moved some stuff around and now our laundry room is a little mud room too! Now the boys can take care of their own jackets with out them being on the floor! woohoo! And of course I needed to switch the artwork to make it all better. I had a frame I purchased awhile back that was too large... but has now found a home. The photo is an old photo of ladies scrubbing laundry.Here are some other prints I found. I have to say I feel like high fiving myself. Last year I did a faceless painting of the Mona Lisa (so you can stick your head in the canvas and take a photo). The boys had destroyed it, so I ripped off the canvass and painted the frame black. I had a mat from another frame, and a frame backing from a frame I used for a painting. I painted the backing black, pasted the print on that, then assembled it and nailed it together! I recycled the black frames from prev projects and cut my own mattes from card stock on the other 2 prints. Now, at one point I did pay money for the original items, but for this particular project, it cost me $00.00!!! :) They are all pictures of doing laundry. My favorite is the large one... there is a crab attacking the garment. :)This last photo is Thurston. I sat down to update the blog and he yelled "Hey Mommy, take a picture of me!" and then he posed...

Singapore goodies

I meant to post this last week when Preston came home, but it's been a busy week! He brought us all some goodies from Singapore! Here are a couple of treasures: This is a hand painted watercolor scroll. It's gonna look fabulous in my dining room... we both wish he had picked up a couple more! This is my Dress he picked up. I have been wanting one for a long time, and he has wanted me to have one for a long time as well. It's a little short, but I think it will do! Now I just need to have a baby and loose all the fat so I can wear it!
This one is my absolute favorite. This one is for Aleah! Ahhh! Soooo adorable!!!!
He also got me some smaller vases and a bracelet. The boys got solar powered waving cats! They are hilarious and yes, Thurston has already broken his. Preston got himself a Merlion (the symbol of Singapore) statue. It's actually really cool looking.
He loved his time over there and would jump at the chance to go back. We missed him like crazy and he missed us too. He said that if they ever offered him a year transfer over there, he would take us there in a heart beat. He said it is so clean, safe and full of culture from everywhere. Someday I think I would like to go with him too!

Snow and Treasures

We had another good snow storm last week, this time with Preston here. It wasn't the best snow for a snowman (too powdery), but they did manage to build an awesome snow chump. It was basically a pile of snow with snowman characteristics. They had fun.Thurston LOVES carrots, and will go through a bag of them before I realize it, so when I go to cook them, they are gone. Sadly, some fall by the way side and go bad with out me knowing it. In this case, it worked out great, our snow chump man had a long, skinny bendy nose!Here are the boys with Jazz, the Snow-chump-pile-man. Cute, eh?We had our Christmas Party with our friends last night. While we were getting ready, we put on "A Very Monkey Christmas" (Curious George). Below is one of the many reasons why I love George... he does this to my kids:The party was a blast and Preston scored some sweet presents. Below you will see a photo of some of the finest things money can buy... not one, but 2 collegiate snuggies, AND featuring on TanTo the dog, the Snuggie for Dogs. Preston's other prize was a Lady Gaga CD. (WoW, she's horrible.. I thought so before, but now I can testify to it with an educated opinion)... Bill is holding his big prize of the night... it is for a fancy picnic. He has in his hands a box of pink Walmart wine, complete with easy cheese and generic cheese crackers. Classy! What is not featured here are the bendy straws that came with the box o wine. Preston and Kim (the lucky girlfriend of the man holding the box o wine) had a Mt Dew drink off. They had 5 minutes to chug a 2 liter of Dew. Preston finished his in less than 3 minutes. But Kim held her own. Had it not been for the 3 or more previous Mt Dew's that day, (or the pasta right before)... she may have been able to beat him. The best was when she had to borrow my maternity sweats! Sadly, I did not get pictures of the said event, but I know someone did, so I may have to get a few of those shots.
It was fun.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Snow!!

The boys were VERY excited to wake up to snow this morning. Joseph's first response was
"Now we can make snow angels!" and then he said "And we don't have to drive anywhere today!" (little did I know I forgot to turn in a video at the library and was informed later of a fine I accrued today!!) But it was worth the 50 cents to spend the day in our jammies!
We went outside and had some fun. This year both the boys have adequate snow clothes, so it took them a long time to want to come it, we were out there an hour! I got the side walks and driveway all shoveled while they played.
After they were worn down, we came inside for cookies and hot cocoa. The rest of the day we just kind of bummed around in our jammies and made cookies and watched Santa Claus is Coming to Town. A great day! Just wish Preston was here. :/

cookie makin' and booty shakin' kind of Sunday

It was one of those cold Sundays in December, where all you want to do is make cookies and shake your booty! And that is just what we did! It was a lot of fun. Preston is over in Singapore this week, so we are missing him like crazy, and wish he was here for the fun. Here is how we break it down in the Thomson house, Enjoy!

video

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Thanksgiving

We spent another Thanksgiving here at home in Boise. I think it was the least stressful one yet! The cleaning and most of the set up was done the night before, and Preston had seasoned the Turkey the night before, so when we woke up on Thursday, we were lazy and laid back. Our guests this year were Chi Ming and Wendy, (Wenchi), Bill and Kim and then Jason came a little later. It was nice, and Preston did an amazing job on the Turkey and Potatoes. I will toot my own horn about the pies and the yams though. The pumpkin pie was made from scratch with a pumpkin from our own garden! Honorable mention goes to Rhodes Rolls and Stove Top Stuffing (still my favorite!!) ...and Bill and Kim for the veggies, Wendy for her Panda cup cakes, and Jason for the left over Pecan pie and whipped cream. It was all sooo good! I only have a couple of shots, I forgot to get the camera out during (or after) dinner. But it was fun and we hope everyone did too!
Preston and his sexy self basting the turkey...Let's just say we ate some pie before everyone came....Thurston has been kind of obsessed with Mixers, and when mine died, he took it in as his own. He wanted me to take a picture of him with his mixer. :)

The Life and Death of a Mixer

Back in the day when Preston and I got married, we received a hand mixer as a wedding present. I had one already from my days in single ladyhood, so we tried to take it back. I think we went to like 4 different stores and none of them carried it, so we kept it. About a year later I got that bad boy out and fell in love with it. I know it sounds silly, but when you love baking and cooking, a mixer is your best friend. I was very happy with it, but yes, I secretly coveted the Kitchen Aid Mixers... oh so pretty. Well, a couple of months ago, my little mixer was getting sick. She wasn't doing as well as she usually did, and one day, whilst mixing a batch of dough, she shuttered, sputtered and sparked. When I saw the black smoke rising, I knew it was time to part. Farewell my mixer, you were awesome. She even survived a nearly fatal melting accident when she was left on the stove. My sadness lasted about 2 minutes when I realized that Preston wanted to know what I wanted for Christmas... heehhee. Being the man he is, he was already planning on getting one for me, I just got it a month sooner! He did some research (as he always does) and found some sweet deals. In the end though, he found a secret treasure. I am now the proud owner of a Cuisinart Brushed Chrome 5.5 Quart Stand Mixer SM 55 BC. Oh yeah, she's a beauty. She has 800 watts of baking love power, nearly 2x the amount as the Kitchen Aid Pro, and we got her at a MUCH lower price! I look forward to many years of happiness....

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Bling for my Cat

I'm not a crazy cat lady.
My Cat, Jazz came home the other day with out his collar... so he not only lost yet another collar, but his ID tags as well. So we have since ordered him new tags with a handful of back ups. I went to the store to get him a new collar and could not resist this one.
You see, Jazz is a Tuxedo cat, his name comes from his markings that make him look like he is wearing a tuxedo. So when I found a collar that had a bow tie, naturally I couldn't resist.
Doesn't he look fabulous!? And on top of that, Walmart had a super cool pet stocking for $5 loaded with cat toys and catnip. Looks like Santa will be good to Kitty too! ( I know, Lame.)
On another note, (as to not have a post JUST about Jazz), Joseph was on a waiting list, and he got into the Head Start Preschool program. He started yesterday and even gets to ride the bus! He was soooo excited and ready to go. I felt like I shouldn't have had to face this yet, he's not in kindergarten! I thought I was fine until the bus drove away and we turned to walk to the house and Thurston said "I miss Joseph!" Ahhhh... But he is having so much fun, and It's been fun having just Thurston and Mommy time, I think we needed it! Esp with the new baby coming soon. Which by the way only 13 weeks to go!!!! (uuuhhhhgggg..) Wahoo!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Baby Shower

Last week started out pretty uneventful and I decided to take some time to relax... that lasted about a day. Tuesday night we found out that a little boy in our ward was involved in a tragic accident that took his life. It was really hard to think about and made me hold my boys that much tighter. After a long week his funeral was on Saturday and was really hard for everyone there. It is so sad when a little one is taken. My Baby shower was scheduled that day and we decided to keep it because we all needed a release, and I personally needed to be surrounded by people, and these ladies are always fun to be around. I'm so glad we had it because it was fun... AND my sisters Julie and Stacy were sneaky and decided to surprise me!! It was a surprise indeed, and with all that went on, it made me cry (in a good way). Here are some photos of the party. I was hooked up and got lots of cute stuff for Aleah, or as Preston put it "got a lot of accessories for my new doll". ;) I personally like this one because the dress is so cute, and it is covering my bloated face!
The rest of the weekend was great. Preston took charge and care of the boys while me and my sisters giggled and played. We discovered we were a little lame when we all fell asleep watching a movie. They stayed and went to church with me the next day. Thank you guys!! It was soo much fun! And a special THANK YOU to my wonderful neighbor Amber for hosting and putting all kinds of work into it, and Tricia and Samantha for all your work and food and for getting the ball rolling. I feel loved!
Here is a shot of me at 26 weeks. 14 to go!! (12 if history repeats itself!) My butt is having a race to see if it can keep up with the belly. See how proportionate it is?
....and here is a photo of my cat in the sink. And yes I did turn the faucet on him. And yes, I did get a video of it, but no, I did not post it because it takes too long to upload. Pretty funny.

Catching up on Halloween

Wow, little behind here! Halloween was a blast. We had our Halloween Carnival the Friday before and had a record # people show up... and I was surprised just how many people fit in my house! I lost count at 45 children and with the adults I could recall... 66 people!!! My house was left surprisingly clean! There are too many photos to upload and not enough patience for me to post them all here, but you can view them on my Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/album.php?aid=40990&id=1360418656
Preston had gone to SLC to help his parents out with moving some stuff and they all got in really late Friday. Cousin Brent also came (who's at BSU) and the boys were super excited. I decided to treat everyone with Pumpkin Chocolate chip pancakes (they were awesome!) that morning.
We had a busy day moving and unloading some stuff at Uncle Brooks new place and then we visited him at St Al's (where he works) and Julie and I got to look around and see the maternity/ postpartum wing. We didn't get to see much because they are super tight on who they let in with all the sicknesses out there right now. We took the kids to Trunk or Treat and then around the neighborhood. I lasted a block or 2 then went back to hand out candy. Julie had her Witches costume and was greeting everyone with her signature cackle at the door. Then the Lundquists came over for some super yummy Chile and pumpkin pie. Here is our only shot of us, little sad it is out of focus. It was a fun Halloween and I'm glad we got to share it with some family!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Pumpkin by Preston

This year Preston took the reins on the pumpkin carving and design... ok, he pretty much did everything! The boys had fun cleaning it out (I did a scoop or 2), then Preston drew out and cut out an awesome design. Any guesses?I absolutely love this photo!JoJo helping Daddy map out the design.Tada! Did you expect anything other than a Transformer theme? I think he did an awesome job!

Halloween Costumes

This is a video of the boys showing off their Castle Crashers Costumes

video

For those of you who do not know what/ who Castle Crashers are (most people don't)... it is an Xbox game that the boys love. Here is a photo of the toys, I love this photo I found of them attacking the bagel. Joseph is the grey on because he is a special Castle Crasher that Daddy unlocked for him. Thurston calls his "Coo Man" (cool man). It took us forever to figure out why he called him that, then Preston recalled saying once "That red guy is cool, huh?" So Thurston calls him cool man. :)

Here are them posing. We did touch ups on the helmets after these photos were taken, but they were so excited to try them on.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Aleah's Room

So I finished way ahead of schedule, but had a blast designing her room and putting it together. Preston refers to her as my doll, and this was her Doll House. :)This was my Great Nana Hammond's night table, it's had many identities, but I love this one the most. I found this lamp at Target for $17, and may just be my favorite.Back when I first found out I was pregnant, I got this crib off of craigslist and the lady threw the bedding in for free, I'm stoked I got to use it! I had fun painting these pictures as well.I made the curtains, Valance and pillow. The extend of my sewing abilities.I was choosing which picture to use, and had it narrowed down to 3, Joseph chose this one, because he said it was him giving her a kiss when she comes. :) In other news, we ended up buying a Kia Sedona Minivan. I would post a picture, but I didn't take one yet. Surprising, I love it! Esp having all the extra space and the boys just love it.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I Love Preston

That's all I have for today. I love my husband and am pretty sure that he's the perfect match for me. That, and I think we are buying a minivan. We are welcoming our 30's with style. More to come.....

Friday, October 16, 2009

Nap Time

Just thought I would share what happens when you pass out on the couch for a little nap next to a 3 year old with a lot of stickers. Hey, it kept him entertained, and I got a nice refreshing nap!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Happy 30th Birthday to Preston!

This last Sunday, Preston took a major step in life and turned 30. He was a good sport about it. Friday we had a party for him and Chi Ming (who also turned 30). We took advantage of the grill one last time, and Preston made some amazing Chicken. Just so you know, that was the side dish, the main dinner was something more fit for an old man... Tomato soup and Grilled cheese sandwiches. Preston even tried to grill the grilled cheese sandwiches... (I think he was just trying to take advantage of the coals.)
He didn't want a cake, so we made Dirt instead. I made tombstones out of Rice Krispie treats (his favorite), but they had a problem staying up. ha. Here are some photos.

In traditional Birthday fashion, we had a pinata.... it is located in the right hand corner of the above photo... yes, it is the 12 pack case of Mountain Dew and duct tape. It was filled with Butterscotch and peppermint candies ( in lue of his age...) and one kitkat. It was funny.

His actual Birthday was nice, it was Conference, so we stayed in our jammies all day (even when we went to a friends house for dinner...) He got breakfast in bed (which JoJo and Thurston ate 1/2 of) and he got his real birthday presents. His absolute favorite book growing up was Pickle Chiffon Pie by Jolly Roger Bradfield. It was out of print until a few years ago, and the other 2 he loved by the same author are still out of print. I spent more money than I would like to admit collecting these childrens books, but he was so excited. They really are great books and I just love the authors sense of humor. A new favorite memory I have now is all of us (yes, even the cat) snuggled in our jammies in our bed reading these 3 books. It was so sweet!

Fabulous Fall

We seem to have skipped early fall and have jumped into the final days of fall when you are freezing... or is it just me? Last Monday it was 90 degrees and I used my air conditioner. When I woke up on Thursday, I was freezing and had to turn on the heater. So much for the lax months where the heater and gas bill both are under $20. Such is life.
With the season change, I have embraced the cold weather and have started baking like crazy. This is where the pounds of pregnancy will start catching up to me! I made some fantastic Taco Soup yesterday, the prob with me is that I will throw things together but not write down what I did... so I actually paid attention yesterday to my process/ ingredients. I am writing this here more for me, but anyone who is wanting a hearty yummy dish, here you go:
* I may not have exact amounts of things, because I go more by taste
TACO SOUP
In large pot, ground 1 lb of ground beef, season as you would tacos
* you can use taco seasoning packets, but with my allergies I have to use another route... The Taco seasoning in the jumbo jar at Costco is MSG free and it is fantastic. I add this with some season salt and a titch of pepper. I season the meat really well here, because I HATE it when the meat is not seasoned.... just my preference!
Add 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, then fill with water and add to pot
1 15 oz can of black beans
1 15 oz can of kidney beans
1 2.25 oz can of sliced black olives
15 green olives sliced (why 15? because that is how many I had left in
the jar...add as many as you like...)
1/2 cup of frozen corn (add more if you are a fan... this is my tolerance
level of corn...)
From here I just let the ingredients mix and simmer a bit and let the flavors mix etc.. then went back about 1/2 hour later and added more taco seasoning and seasoned salt to taste. I like my stuff very flavorful, so do as you like. If you feel you want more water, I usually add water from the cans of ingredients so the water has some flavor. As for yield, thus far it has provided 4 children servings, 2 Hollie Servings and 2 **Preston servings (this may be equal to a small family size...) :) And still have some left. It is great frozen (not really, more it keeps well frozen and it is good when it is reheated). We usually put a bit of cheese on top and eat with tortilla chips.
Then I decided to do dessert. Lately when I make cookies, I freeze 1/2 the dough (this is more to control my consumption). We made some Pumpkin Spice Sugar cookies that I found here: http://www.recipezaar.com/Pumpkin-Spice-Sugar-Cookies-133186Preston really liked the recipe, but I think next time I will just use the trusted Nana Hammond sugar cookie recipe and add pumpkin spice to that. We originally ate them with a powdered sugar and milk glaze. Well, yesterday I decided to be daring. I used the rest of the dough and put it on my pizza pan and baked it like a giant cookie/ dessert pizza. I made a cream cheese frosting with cream cheese, sugar and almond favoring (I was out of vanilla) which was soooo yummy! I sauteed some apple slices in butter, cinnamon, sugar and nutmeg and then added to the top. Yeah, it was fantastic! See:
!
We ate well.
Now, for my final thingy.... You know how each spring you plant a seed, or buy a plant and plant that and look on happily as you watch it grow, and then come Fall, you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor? Well, what happens when you suck as a Gardner and you kill your Azalea plant? Don't be embarrassed, embrace what you have done and tell people you did it on purpose. Dead plants make fantastic haunted tree's for your Halloween decor. See:
That is all for today.
Happy Fall Everyone.