Friday, August 31, 2012

August Foodie Pen Pal; part 2

This month I sent food to Maggie Maggio, who lives in NYC and works in publishing. She told me she would like local items and prefers quality of quantity. Her only request was that I not send pickles because she doesn't like them. Unfortunately, I did have pickles in mind since we LOVE a local pickle maker called Frog Ranch Pickles. However, I did have some other favorites to send, which included the following:

  • Montgomery Inn BBQ sauce which is made in Cincinnati.
  •  Mama DiSalvos Italian Sauce, which is local here in Dayton and is BY FAR our favorite sauce  EVER!!!
  • Local honey from White Mountain Honey Farm in Xenia, Ohio. 
  • And for a little treat, a chewy carmel popcorn cob
  • I also included some homemade zucchini muffins, made from zucchini from our garden
  • And a non local, but just favorite ingredient of mine, balsamic glaze.

To see what Maggie though of my goodies, you can see her post here:

August Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

This month Caitlin from Maryland was my Foodie Pen Pal.  I could not have been happier with the great variety of healthy snacks. August was a crazy month since we went on vacation and then came home just in time for back to school. And I don't always have the time for a homemade breakfast or snack, so I enjoyed have a box full of goodies to grab on the go! The one thing that Caitlin said she enjoyed the most was the chocolate covered bananas; so of course I opened those suckers up right away and they were gone in 24 hours. I did let the kids each try one, maybe 2…but no more than that…they were delish! Thanks Caitlin for the wonderful assortment!

To join me & be a Foodie Pen Pal click HERE!

Here’s a detailed explanation of the program:
-On the 5th of the month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal!
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treatsThe spending limit is $15The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you can choose to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.
- Foodie Penpals is open to US, Canadian residents & UK residents.  Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. We’ve determined things might get too slow and backed up if we’re trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa. So, I’m going to keep two separate lists and match US w/ US and Canada w/ Canada!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Life with a 2 & 3 yr old

Life is a blur with 2 toddlers.
As the kids get older lots of things get easier. But I might dare to say life might have been easier with a newborn and a 15 month old than it is with a 2 & 3 yr. old.

Life with a 2 & 3 yr old is LOUD & CHAOTIC!

It is finding whole rolls of toilet paper all over the house.

It is going through 10 bottles of shampoo in a month.

It is cleaning toothpaste from the carpet, and while you are cleaning that they are painting the dresser with nail polish.

It is listening to one note on the harmonica over and over.

It is climbing up and not being able to get down.

It is taking 20 minutes to get in the car because they won't sit in their seat, and when they do they insist they can buckle themselves…which they can't.

It is "I got it" and "I can do it" hundreds of times a day.

It is food all over the table and the floor and themselves.

It is tantrums in Kroger because they don't have the right kind of cart.

It is meltdowns at the mere mention of the word no.

It is cuts, bruises, scrapes and bumps because they can do what the bog kids do.

It is pushing that darn water button on the fridge several times an day just to see the water go on the floor and say "uh-oh!"

It is coloring on anything that does not belong to them…like big sis or brothers stuff.

It is playing princess and sword for days on end.

It is hoping the brown stuff they are showing you is chewed raisins and not something else…

It is lots and lots and lots of laundry.

It is having to hide the lip gloss and the band-aids…

It is never having tissues in the house.

It is always having to keep an eye on my wallet because we have a money obsession in our house.

It is constantly picking up toys and books.

It is searching for missing puzzle pieces.

It is cars racing across the kitchen floor and balls flying through the air.

It is yelling, "turn the hose off" many many times.

It is cleaning the windows every day just so we can see outside through the fingerprints.

But it is pure joy to listen to their laughter and and hold them tight and know they are mine... and that yes, they will go to sleep in a couple of hours!

Monday, August 27, 2012

1st Day of School, Round 2


                This morning I packed TWO lunches….
                                And TWO Backpacks…..
                                           And Watched TWO kids get on the bus!

I was a bit emotional and saying Melina was excited would be an understatement. As I put my first baby girl on the big yellow bus to Kindergarten I was sad and excited. What a milestone. And for us that means two down and two to go! :) She and Logan sat together this morning on the bus and waved goodbye. When the bus pulled up this afternoon they both waved hello before they even got off! And today at recess my kiddos found each other and hugged! I am so glad Logan is such a GREAT big brother to her! She LOVED that he "looked after her" today! She had a fantastic day and can't wait to go back on Wednesday! Meeka on the other hand missed her a lot!

All ready for school!

With Big Brother

Check out how big her backpack is on her stuffed with all her school supplies!

At the bus stop

Getting on the bus!

And off we go exploring another path on this exciting family journey!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

My Little Swimmer

My little Meeka was clinging to Michael next back in June, scared to jump in the pool. Then she got braver and braver as we went to the pool day after day and by July 4th she was able to jump off the diving board at Grammie's house with her floaties. 

By the end of July she was swimming independently and underwater where she could touch the bottom (2-3ft). And by last week at the beach she started swimming on her own. So today we went to the pool to enjoy the last couple of pool days this season and decided to test out her new "swimming skills." She jumped in at 4 ft and swam across the pool, a couple of times!

So we ventured over to the board, since she has been dying to try to out, as she has watched Logan and Melina all summer. And by golly, she GOT IT! At 3 yrs and 4 months my baby girl is an independent swimmer who can go off the board. And all this without a single lesson! 

Watch for her in Summer 2020!

Friday, August 24, 2012

First Week of Back to School

We are easing in to the school year…with GUSTO! Logan started this week (and so far everything has gone great!); soccer practices for him started this week as well. Next week Melina starts school and soccer and the following week Meeka. Then we add moms morning out, Boy Scouts, dance, church group, cook & swim class, zumba, and we still have Dayton Mamas activities and I have Jr. League. It has been a crazy start though because of all the parent meetings, assessments and planning meetings. As we ease into our roles and schedule this year, I am sure things will calm down.

This week might have been hardest for Carson. Logan and Carson share a special bond. They love each other so much and Logan is like a little dad to Carson. He gets him out of bed and will help him with breakfast. He showers him and is all around a great helper with him. 

This week, Carson kept asking, "Where is Logan?" When I would say, "at school," he would retort back in a sad voice, "Awwwwwww." Kinda broke my heart! One day after school when I was calling Logan's name and Carson was napping, I hear through the monitor, "Logan's at school, Logan's at school." So cute! And you know what is even cuter?…Logan thought the story of Carson missing him was cute! I LOVE the bond my boys have and I hope as they grows it still stays this strong.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

1st of day school Round 1

Today was the 1st day of 2nd grade for Logan. 

2nd grade…it sounds so much more grown up than 1st grade. And I think I have him brainwashed because he said to me this morning, "2nd grade is just to old." But I guess it turned out OK, because as he got off the bus, I got a big shout out, "2nd grade is AWESOME!" I'll take it! And to top it off he is in class with one of his very best friends and a couple other good friends. Not sure his teacher knows what she's in for! :)

Here's to a great year!

Showing off his vase he made
for his teacher

Monday, August 20, 2012

Last Day of Summer Vacation

Done, Finished, Completed, but oh so good! 
Summer Vacation has come to an end today, but it was very good to us. We made the most of our time together. We spent a lot of time at the pool and doing FUN things. As you can see, we did not finish our list; but most of the items we did not finish were "field trips" and thats OK with me. I am so glad we made our bucket list and we really had a great time working on completing it together!

Tomorrow starts another chapter.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


We spent the past week in Corolla on the Outer Banks for vacation. We have not been to the beach, or anywhere on vacation, since Logan was newly 4 and Melina 15 months, so this was long awaited…

The kids as well as Michael and I had a fantastic time! It was so relaxing wake up and watch the sun rise over the ocean and spend every day on the beach. We rode the waves, made sand castles and took walks at dusk. We could not have asked for a better vacation!

First steps in the ocean.
We drove over night and they woke when we were almost there. We spent some time  the first morning on the beach before we could even get into our house.

Checking out the waves

Melina LOVED to use her boogie board to go out and ride the waves.

Working on their sand castle

The finished product became a crab hotel…or crab graveyard as the week went on!
Melina and Meeka loved to be buried in the sand
Watching the sun rise
And the sun came up

The girls enjoying an early morning walk on the beach

The crew and I on the beach

An evening walk on the beach always turned into everyone being soaking wet!

People watching 

They enjoyed seeing that their castle did not get destroyed overnight!

Pooped after playing hard and swimming
View of our house form the beach

Pool time!

Meeka learned to swim by herself (no floaties!) this week!

Carson being GOOFY in the pool!

Daddy and the kids!
Footprints in the Sand

Saying Goodbye to the Beach on our very last night

Our family vacation
August 2012

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Logan's Lego Birthday Party

I think Logan and all his friends had a GREAT time tonight! This was a fun and simple theme and you can not go wrong with Legos!

The Invites

We had to change the date because of weather.
Luckily today turned out to be a beautiful 93 degree day!

The Set-up

The Food Table

The Juice Boxes

A Lego Bowl for Pirate Booty

The gift, goodie bag and game table

The eating tables

The game

It was 55.
The winner won a mini lego set!

The FUN!

The Gifts!

The Cake

I made a Lego Ice Cream cake.
Chocolate, vanilla, hot fudge, Reese's, whipped cream and buttercream

The Goodie Bags

Lego Bags

These are baby food jars spray painted yellow
and then I drew Lego faces on them.

Lego head marshmallow pops!

The bag also included a mini-figure and edible lego brick candy!