Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Halloween, Elvis and Tears

Me, to the boys about Halloween, "I know!!! We could all dress up like Elvis.  All of us!  That would be fun - The Six Elvi!"

Number 4's eyes well up with tears immediately, "Nooooo, I don't want to be Elvis. No, Mommy.  We can't be Elvis."

"Why not, baby?"

Bursts into tears, "He fell of the potty and died." 

Another day, another story,

*Might have something to do with this summer excursion.

What the ALMOST teenager wore Wednesday

Not too many people are aware of this:  a commonly overlooked Mom duty is stylist.   This is especially hard when you live on a farm.  The favorite everyday gunky tees and hole-y work pants must be separated from the fit-for-public wear.  Not to put all the emphasis on appearance, but they must learn.  You have to find items they will like and help them divine their own sense of style.  Then you have to teach them to apply that style on a regular basis.   No short order. (But what mom duty is?)

I felt a bit of hard work paying off when the ALMOST teenager, Stringbain, put this simple doozy together:

Shirt: Consignment
Jeans: Gap kids
Bracelet: VBS
Sunglasses: little shop in Savannah, GA
Flip flops: Walmart

I think he was channeling inner Beatle...and is on his way to realizing his the rock-star within!
linked to WIWW @ the pleated poppy

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Why We Don't Have a Dog

Or  "How to Clean Your Bathroom in 5 Minutes"
Or  "Potty Training Boys - The Dark Side"
Or  "New Toys and Towels"
Or  "Why I Never Shave My Legs"
Or  "Shit Happens"

If I am anything, I am honest.  Ask me, if you want to know the truth.  The whole truth.  The whole, nasty, stinky, gag-inducing truth.  Fair warning.

About 45 minutes ago, I was minding my own business in the shower while Number 4 was "taking a tub" in my bathroom.  It is a great way to keep him occupied while I get ready.  I can keep an eye on him for 5-10 minutes while we both get clean. An everyday occurrence.

"Moooooooom!!!  I need you!!!!"

"I'll be done in a minute, honey.  Let me rinse my hair."

"MOOOOOOOOMMMMMM!!!!!  I REALLLYYYYY need you !!!!  I pooped.  I pooped in the tub."

Damn it to hell.

I got out of the shower, got him out of the tub, put him on the toilet, which smeared poop all over the toilet.  So I put him in the shower and started cleaning the toilet. Then I saw the poop on his towel, the bath toys and on the floor.  I threw the towel and bath toys away and started cleaning the tub and the floor.

"Hey Mom, I pooped in the shower."

I got him out of the shower and put him back on the toilet, which smeared poop all over the toilet again.  I cleaned the shower so I could put him back in again while I cleaned the toilet.  Then, I cleaned the shower again.

Another day, another story,

When you take your boys to their first dove hunt...

There are things you will learn as well.  My observations:
 It is possible to take a picture while holding a shotgun.
 Dove hunting is a bit like fishing: hurry up to get everything done, then wait and wonder if anything is going to be attracted to your bait. So, you have to use creative entertainment when the doves aren't flying.

 It takes a lot more than one shell to fell a dove.

Practicing is worth the time!
Getting there is half the fun.
Just like the innate ability to make real car and truck noises, boys apparently know just what to do while hunting:  they got off the 4 wheeler, loaded their guns and assumed this position. 
The more the merrier - at least you can talk while you wait - one step up from fishing!
Shorter younger boys are eager to fetch!
 Even tough farm boys make faces when cleaning their first bird.
Hand-washing was a welcome relief!

 They got 4 doves yesterday, with the help of our guide and two uncles. They are back in the field today, hoping to increase their success!

Monday, September 27, 2010


You know how if the light and angle is just right you can see a shadow and barely recognize yourself?  Fourteen years of marriage has done that to us. 

We are shadows of our former selves.  

I'm sure I am not the only bride who had lots of preconceived ideas about how life was going to work out according to my time line.   

Thanks to Divine intervention as well as Divine curveballs, we've been privy to a long, full list of growing experiences.  

As we begin another year together, I am grateful to recognize that our taller, sleeker, more beautiful and slightly hard to recognize shadows, are due to the Son shining on us at just the right angle.

Happy Anniversary, Mainbain. 


linked to Emily and Ann

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Cracking the omelette code

Some of you may have already cracked the perfect omelette every time code. I possessed no omelette making skills until reading Julie and Julia.  Though I'm not not artistic in any traditional sense, I do consider food a valid artistic medium.  I knew if  the kitchen novice Julie could pull it off, with determination and the right equipment I could do it too.  I also watched Julia Child's omelette show on you tube before risking  a dozen eggs.

I've been making them and the baintrain has been enjoying them since March: I thought it high time I shared!

::Perfect omelette::
1 1/2 T butter or lard (from a farmer, not that rancid stuff on store shelves!)
1 fresh egg
1 t water
1 8" omelette pan

I perfected my method on a gas stove, please keep that in mind.  Heat the omelette pan on medium low while you grab a mixing bowl and the eggs. Turn heat down to low, whisk egg and water together. 

Add butter to hot pan - don't be alarmed by serious sizzling! Once the butter is melted, add your egg and start shaking pan back and forth.  Nothing fancy, just consistent.  The egg will probably bubble a bit which is fine, just keep shaking back and forth. 
 Halfway cooked in 20 seconds!
In less than a minute, it's set! You can add a bit of cheese just before sliding it onto your plate.  
Filled with cheese, it's a crowd-pleaser!

My very first try was a success!  Your's will be to with a few tips:  heating the pan before adding the butter is crucial.  The back and forth shaking is also a must.  It will stick in the middle if you don't shake.  Sliding it out of the pan is awkward in the beginning, but won't take long to get used to!
This is one of my favorite breakfasts to make when I haven't had time to make a mental menu plan.  It takes about 8 minutes to get 6 omelettes served.  Even less time for the omelettes to disappear from their plates!

Bon appetite...


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Time in paradise

We were blessed again this year with time and resources to visit our private island paradise with my family.  Living on a farm doesn't afford much time for vacation  - much less with the entire clan -  so there's deep sincerity when I say we were truly thankful.  

Since I was so thankful, I won't bother to recount the hours we spent affixing the luggage carrier to the top of our car, or how it had to be dismantled to park in the hotel garage in Savannah. Or  the  buckets of rain it held when we had to re-pack it the next day.  Like having a baby all the labor - or c-section prep- fades into the distant past when there's an ocean waiting on you...

Mainbain had an important business trip, so he'd scheduled his flight to arrive in Savannah on Sunday.  The baintrain, my sister and I drove on Saturday to check it out.  It seemed the perfect time to become acquainted with that lovely city (read: shops and restaurants) while waiting on mainbain's flight to arrive the next day.  Stringbain and limabain both posessed their own shopping fund and couldn't wait to spend it on accessories.

We took time Sunday morning to walk around *pretending to be the Beatles*, climb some steps, check out the river,  and look at a few monuments: 

Not exactly George, Paul, Ringo and John...

Overflowing with gratitude after arriving and unpacking the tightly packed car, they couldn't wait for sand between their toes:

They started swimming and skim boarding as soon as they reached the water - howling the whole way in:

The time in paradise flew by as we built sandcastles:

The 13 cousins took turns burying each other:

I practiced my creative energy in the sand too:

One of the best things about going on vacation with extended family, is lots of child-care back-up.  With 13 adults and 13 kids there's always somebody headed out or coming back from the beach...

I need room for my soul to breathe, and recharge my batteries being alone.   The combined family vacation leaves time for nice long solo morning strolls looking for shells while listening to this. Glorious!

The cousins ganged up on a local photographer to get a precious picture of 13 under 13:

We ended the week celebrating having more fun with family skit-night.   My parents and sister took the gold medal with their skit:  Frankie and the Beach-ettes!
That's my Daddy sporting a giant Afro and fake nose and lip piercings!!
Mainbain recently read an article that to avoid post vacation let-down, planning something fun on the way home is imperative.  Thankfully, just out side of Chattanooga there's a firework superstore.  

By the time we pulled in the driveway - there was no more, beach-nostalgia for the baintrain - just looking for matches!
The sun was shining on our island when we arrived and shining when we left.  

I took it as a sign of marvelous things to look forward more time in paradise!

linked to Emily and Ann

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I love this 5 year old...

Who hugs the school bus driver every single day

Who knows all the words to The Black Eyed Peas "Good Night"

Who eats only chicken nuggets and pizza

Who keeps inviting new people to go on an all-expenses paid Hawaiian vacation with us

Who uses his toothless grin and massive cowlick to wrap everyone around his little finger

Who has confidence and rhythm beyond his years

Who still likes a sippy cup of milk before bed

Who takes an 8x10 photo of me to Kindergarten every day

Who cracks me up and infuriates me in equal measure

Who tells me I look fabulous, sometimes 

Happy 5th Birthday, Number 3,

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

When you'd like to avoid the drive-thru

Leaving for the beach early in the morning means lots of planning and packing.  One thing I have been consciously avoiding as much as possible is the drive-thru.  I saw this recipe and knew it would be a great traveling breakfast. I made it in about 20 minutes, which left me plenty of time to scurry around pack everything else. Thought you might like to try it as well!

4 c almonds
1 c unsweetened coconut
1 c ground flax seeds - I did it in our coffee grinder
1 c almond butter
1 t salt
1 c coconut oil
3 T vanilla

Even though I hadn't planned on changing her recipe, I realized too late I didn't have any honey or maple syrup.  It's perfectly sweet enough for adults without the sweetners, but I will make sure they're on hand next time.  I think the baintrain would have like it a bit sweeter.

Grind up everything in your food processor, and press into a 9x13 pan.

Refrigerate while you melt a dark chocolate bar over low heat.
Gently spread melted chocolate over almond bars - like icing.

picture courtesy of
I threw in the cooler the night before to dish out in the car, once we were on the road. Planning on making again for hectic school mornings.  

linked to:
and lisa


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