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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Secret Stitch Shop!...and giveaway


It's finally open! A couple of friends and I have joined forces to open The Secret Stitch Shop on Etsy. What do we sell? Super cute aprons and sweet nursing covers at affordable prices. And it's just in time for Mother's Day. (By the way--we are offering FREE SHIPPING until May 15th! Also, just in time for Mother's Day!) Aprons have made a comeback and are cuter than ever. So check out the shop. If you see something you like, go ahead, buy it. :) We'll be adding new items weekly, so check back often! If you see something you like and someone buys it before you, let me know and I'd be happy to make another. Or, if there is something specific you'd like (one made to match your kitchen decor, for example) email me or leave me a comment with a way to get in contact with you. I'll definitely take custom orders.


In celebration of our grand opening, we are having a giveaway down at The Secret Stitch Club blog. What are we giving away? An apron, of course! Jill made this loverly apron. It's bright and cheery and perfect for all the spring cleaning and Easter baking or just for laying around watching TV or walking to the mailbox. What? Who does that? Not me! :)
So head on over the The Secret Stitch Club blog and enter.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Muu-uud

That's how Cade says mud. He turns into a two syllable word. He does it with a lot of one syllable words, actually. Dad is day-ad. Mom is mo-om. Egg is ay-egg. You get the idea. So the other day the kids played in the muu-uud. They made their own. They toted water from the hose out into the middle of our "yard." Then they toted the mud back and forth to...well, I don't really know where. I think they just like shoveling it into pails, carrying it around, sloshing it all over themselves and each other and me and the side walk and then abandoning the muddy pail for a different toy. I was outside taking pics of my aprons to sell on Etsy (more on that to come in the next few days!) so I took a couple of the muddy kiddos. This is what I mean about sloshing it all over themselves. Her whole front side is drenched.
Cade and Landon fixing the mower. I love this pic. So cute! They all play so well together. We are lucky to have the Picketts right next door.

Braden having some trouble with the Hulk toy. I love that look on his face. Hey, it is the Hulk...of course there's gonna be trouble.Whew! Hulk finally gave in to the power of the Braden.Cade being so proud of his mu-udy hands.

Friday, March 20, 2009

What Marriage is all About

Cade: Mom, I know that place. [He points to the picture of the Mesa Temple we have on the wall.] It's the temple.
Picture by Richard Webb (no relation) who also took the photo that we have on our wall. He's awesome! Look for him at local Deseret Book stores.

Me: You're right Cade. It's pretty, huh?

Cade: Yeah, and I'm gonna get married there.

Me: [Shocked because I didn't think we had really talked about this yet.] That's a good idea, Cade! [We're all about good ideas lately.]

Cade: Yeah, and then I'm going to have Captain Crunch and fruit snacks all I want.

And that, folks, is what marriage is all about--sugar cereal and fruit snacks. :)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Down at the station...

For FHE this week our cool neighbors, the Picketts, invited us to go on a ride on the lightrail. They finished the lightrail a couple of months ago and we had been thinking about taking the kids, so this was perfect. We rode the the middle of Phoenix, then hopped on the opposite train and rode back home. Cade keeps asking to go on the "faaaaaaast" train.
McMillans
The Picketts
Jill and Elsie
Kev and Gav
This is a pic of all of the kids waiting for the train. We had to do something to settle them down. They were pretty excited to be at the train station.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dino Kev

video

Another reason why I love Kevin: you can almost always find him out playing with the kids. They love him for it. Here he is doing his trademark Velociraptor impression.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Another giveaway to tell you about...

One of my favorite blogs, Make It and Love It is having another cute giveaway! This one is for little Myla-aged girls. I'm so hoping to win!! Check it out here.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Becoming self-reliant

Becoming self-reliant and developing a food and financial reserve in case of an emergency or disaster has been on our mind a lot lately. This has also been a frequent topic of conversation with family and friends. My sister, Nicki, has done a lot of research on food storage and has a lot of information to share. I guess she got tired of all my questions :) because she started a blog devoted to home preparedness. (Just kidding. Nicki is very patient and is very willing to help others out.) Sometimes it seems overwhelming, but she helps break it down so it seems doable. Check it out to get more info on the topic.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Lemon Cream Cupcakes

What is it about lemons that make it really feel like spring? Technically, they ripen in the winter, but for some reason lemons are in the same category as Easter and bunnies and orange blossoms and pleasant weather. Growing up we had three lemon trees in our yard (my brothers and sister could tell you stories about the havoc they have wreaked with those lemons). So lemons were always in abundance and my mom always made lemon bars and fresh lemonade. Mmmm. I love lemons. Anyway, I had a bag of lemons waiting to be used, so today for a family dinner I made Lemon Cream cupcakes with a Lemon Cream Cheese frosting. They are so yummy and I wanted to share the recipe. Both of the recipes are adapted from allrecipes.com.

Lemon Cream Cupcakes
1 c butter, softened
2 c sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp lemon zest
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 1/2 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 c sour cream


In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add lemon peel and vanilla; mix well. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream (batter will be thick). Fill paper-lined muffin cups with 1/4 c of batter.


Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes clean. Cool for 10 minutes; remove towire racks to cool completely. Frost.


Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/4 c butter, softened
1 c confectioners sugar
2 Tbl lemon juice
2 tsp lemon zest
2 1/4 c confectioners sugar


Cream butter and cream cheese well. Add 1 cup confectioners sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest. Mix well. Add the remaining confectioners sugar to achieve the consistency you want. Frost cupcakes!


* I doubled the frosting recipe because I knew I wanted to frost the cupcakes with the large star tip, and that always takes more frosting. And, I hate having half a package of cream cheese just sitting in my fridge. It always goes bad. I also added more lemon juice, but that's just a personal preference.


Cade couldn't get enough and as I was frosting the cupcakes he kept asking me to put a "star" on his finger. I couldn't resist everytime because he'd stick his skinny finger out and say, "Pleeeeease Mommy" and then give a cute little giggle when I did. So, any moms looking for some bonus points with the kids make some "cuppacakes." (I'll admit it, I am...the bonus points always seem to go to Daddy.)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Book & Apron Giveaway

We are having our first giveaway at The Secret Stitch Club. We are giving away this new book by EllynAnne Geisel, The Kitchen Linens Book. It's a sweet book that includes tons of projects and recipes and even a vintage transfer pattern for kitchen towels.

Along with the book we are giving away an apron made from a vintage kitchen curtain. It's really cute! Go here and enter to win by leaving a comment. What's better than free?!

Spring has Sprung!

And it'll only last a few weeks, so we are taking advantage of it while we can. We spend a lot of time outside lately. The kids think it's summer and that we should be wading in the pool and eating popsicles. I did give in on the popsicles, but no pool yet. :)

Finger-lickin' good

So cool in his shades.

I just love this picture. Check out the hint of the chocolate from the popsicle..reminds me of a mini 'stache.

Gavin loves the outdoors too...he loves to eat the grass and the leaves and the hard ball thingies that drop off the tree and hurt my feet.

We get to play with our cool neighbors, the Picketts, a lot. In fact, it's just not as fun when they aren't outside with us. Today they all climbed in this big box and colored it to look like a ship. I cracked up when Cade asked, "Mom, will you fly us? You have big muscles." Yeah, not that big Cade. :)
We were lucky to have some pretty baby girls join us outside today!

Elsie is a cutie!

Just check out that little pout. I'm thinking Gavin will definitely have his hands full in a couple of years. :)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Cake Wrecks

I know, I haven't blogged about anything substantial in awhile. It's coming, I promise. :) In the meantime, you have to check out the Cake Wrecks blog that I just found through my time-wasting blog surfing last night. Apparently it's pretty popular, so you may already know about it and I'm the last one to know. Yeah, that's probably it. Anyway, Kevin and I spent way too much time last night laughing through all of her posts. Granted, it was pretty late and things go two ways for me when it's late--Christie the Grumpus or Christie the Slap Happy Loon emerges. Last night the loon came out.

Here, just for a taste (get it, taste...I'm so punny. Hmmm, I must still be tired) check out a couple of cakes that she posted (remember, these are professional cake decorators). All pictures from Cake Wrecks.

Some cake decorators take their orders a little too literally:

Guess you can't guess what these people wanted on their cakes.


This order was for a black high heel. High heel, not hill!

Seriously, do they even think while they are decorating? They must crank out so many they don't even read what they've written.

And one of my favorites:

What 5 year old doesn't want a rabid wolf mauling sweet little piggies on his birthday cake? I'm thinking about forgoing the Go, Diego, Go cake in favor of Big Bad Wolfie on a Rampage for Cade this year. Think he'd go for it?