Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I love snow days! The kids are having a blast sleeping in, playing board games, playing video games and just hanging out. My house is a pit, the laundry is piling up, the floors need to be mopped, the bills need to be paid but I think I am just going to snuggle up under a warm blanket and read a book.
I made this potato soup that was so so good the other day. I had never made it before. and am actually shocked that it turned out. It is perfect for these cold days!
Creamy Potato Soup
4 slices bacon
3 large potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
water to cover
2 cups milk
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon paprika
In a large saucepan cook bacon until crisp. Set bacon aside, along with 3 tablespoons of bacon drippings.
Add potatoes, onion, carrot and celery to drippings. Add enough water to cover vegetables and cook over low heat until tender, stirring occasionally.
Stir in milk, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil.
In a separate bowl, stir together sour cream, flour and paprika. Gradually stir 1 cup of hot soup mixture into sour cream mixture.
Pour sour cream mixture into sour mixture. Cook until good and bubbly hot. Top with chopped bacon pieces.
We don't like celery so I left it out. Also, I didn't cut the potatoes small enough so they took forever to soften up.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Keep your lips to yourself!

Nathan has always struggled with spelling and writing, a common issue with asperger kids. He is an incredible reader though. It was a really frustrating issue for me when I was homeschooling him because I just didn't know how to help him. So far at school he has made all A's on his spelling test but C's and D's on the dictation part of the test. Thankfully it is 2 separate grades. He seems to be able to memorize the words but he can not spell them in sentences. This week his words for some reason are very hard for him. We have studied for hours and he is still just not getting it. I have tried everything I know to help him. Now he is saying ,"I am no good at spelling and writing. I can never do it." It just breaks my heart. It seems like just yesterday he didn't have a care in the world and now I see him stressing. He told Jarrett that he wants mommy to homeschool him. Oh, how I would in a millisecond, but this is what is best for him this year. My prayer is that he discovers his passion at an early age so we can nurture it and mold it. The other stuff just won't matter as much.

We also got an email from his teacher today:


Yesterday Nathan started trying to kiss the girls. I talked to him about it and he said he would stop. These girls must be irresistible because he was at it again today. I told him he would loose his stamp today. I also had him go down to Mrs. Ingram's room to chill out a little. I just thought you would want to know about your little lover boy. :)


I am thrilled that she has a sense of humor about these things. The autism teacher is getting a video for him to watch. Oh mercy!!

This school thing is a whole new adventure. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The answer is...

Ok, none of you were even close. I wish I could have gotten all of those items for under $10. I thought I did really good at the grocery store until I read your guesses. I paid $19. That was a 64% savings. I saved $19.58 with coupons and $11.99 by using the Homeland savings card. That is a total of $31.57. I was so excited!!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

How much do you think??

Ok, I have a little game for you. Take a guess at how much all these groceries cost me. I bought them all at one store.
2 8 packs of juicy juice
sugar cookie mix (don't judge me)
2 arm and hammer baking soda
refied beans
12 rolls of toliet paper
200 count Dixie napkins
betty crocker icing
Gain Detergent
Mrs. Bairds Bread
Golden Grahams
rice krispies

Family Fun Night

Once a week we try to have a family fun night. This has become more important to us as the children have gotten older and our schedules have gotten busier. Especially since we have stopped homeschooling I struggle with the fact that we aren't together as much as I would like. We always have a great time spending time together no matter what it is we are doing. I have been running out of ideas lately and wanted to try something new so I made a Family Fun Night Jar. The kids decorated an old Mason Jar and I added strips of paper with ideas on them. The kids close their eyes and pick a piece of paper. Friday night Madelyn picked "Powers Out" We played games in the dark with a lantern and candles. They thought it was great. Nathan wanted to pick a new strip of paper out of our jar Saturday night as well.

Here is what I came up with but I am wanting to add more ideas. Leave me a comment with your ideas and we can compile a fun list for us all to use with our families.

Game Night
Movie Night
Go out for Dessert
Watch Family Movies
Sleepover in the Family Room
Card Night
Wii Night
Art Night
Powers Out (play games in the dark, flashlight tag)
Puzzle Party
Hiking (summer time)
Spend the night in the backyard in a tent (summer)

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Ode to the Rooster

Well our family must say a sad goodbye to our Rooster. He has been watching over our kitchen for 7 years. Certain people who shall remain un-named never liked Mr. Rooster. I really don't know why they would have a problem with him. He is a lovely green, he never talks back, he loved my cooking, he never ever had a bad hair day. He is low maintance and truly an assest to our family. But He thought it was ugly and could never understand why we would need a rooster in our kitchen. That certain person painted our kitchen and trim this weekend so out of gratitude I will bid a fond farewell to Mr. Rooster. I hope that the next owners of Mr. Rooster will treat him with the love and respect that he deserves. If you know anyone who would like to adopt him let me know. We are an equal opportunity rooster adoption agency.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Donald Trump Jr.

This picture doesn't really need any words does it?

Madelyn gave Nathan Monopoly for his birthday last month. We started playing it last Saturday and have just had the best time ever playing it. We have left it set up on the coffee table and ever night after dinner and baths we have been playing. Nathan is Donald Trump Jr. He has hotels on all of his high dollar properties and is about to bankrupt all of us. He did feel sorry for me when I couldn't afford to pay him $1400 rent so he gave me one of his lesser valuable properties. I am glad he is a compassionate land lord.

Nathanism: The other day Nathan told me that he has a girl that he has his eye on in his class. He then tells me that she is just "Too beautiful to ignore!"

I think that may be a really good pick up line later in life.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Madelyn after the dinosaur ride. She screamed the whole way through. It was truly a very scary ride. Nathan buried his head in his lap.
All smiles before the ride!

Ok, are you tired of the Disney Pictures yet?? Oh well, you will have to endure a few more!
I don't know what happened here but I can't move the pictures around so they are all out of order. Today we enjoyed seeing all of the animals on the safari and riding Expedition Everest. The kids loved the Finding Nemo and Lion King shows. The Bugs life 3D show freaked them out though! It was a fun day and a beautiful park.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Magic Kingdom Day 2

Friday morning we had to be at MK by 8:15 am for our reservations for Cinderella's Royal Table. All the girls were headed there and the boys were going to Crystal Palace for a breakfast buffet.

I had to call 6 months in advance for these reservations and was so excited to get them. I think it is every little girl's dream to go to Cinderella's castle. When we entered the castle the girls got to visit with Cinderella, get her autograph, and take a picture with her. Then we walked up the winding stair case then entered the dining area. I love the pic of Madelyn with her dress hiked up. (Notice the tennis shoes.)

Grampy surprised the kids and said he would buy them each a souvenir today. Madelyn picked out Minnie ears and Nathan picked a Mickey Sorcerer hat. They pretty much wore them the rest of the trip. Since we knocked out MK the first day we just hit a few of our favorites again, saw a show, toured Minnie and Mickey's house then headed back to the resort and went swimming. The weather was absolutely amazing during our trip! We headed to Downtown Disney for dinner and to walk around all of the shops. Max slept through most of dinner.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Epcot, oh no, not the characters!!!

After a good night sleep and better luck with the bus we got to Epcot bright and early. We were excited to see the big white golf ball!

We headed straight to Soarin' along with everybody else that was there that day. However, we walked straight on and were one of the first groups on. This ride was incredible and I can totally see why it is Disney's #1 ride.

We hit the boat ride and then headed over to Nemo and Friends and Turtle Talk with Crush. They were all great.

We had a fabulous Chinese lunch then after headed toward Test Track. This ended up being the kids favorite ride. All five of the kids were shrieking about how cool and great the ride was after they got off and this GM lady came up and said she loved their enthusiasm and gave us VIP passes to the GM lounge. We went up a secluded entrance then enjoyed the fabulous views of Epcot. There was also a window we could look out onto the ride. Then to top it off we got to get straight onto the ride again without going through the fastpass lane. We felt like Disney Royalty. Yea for Disney Magic.

We made a stop at the Character Spot. All the kids wanted to get the characters autographs. The line was really long but when the cm saw Nathan's pass she let us straight to the characters. This is the one time I really noticed some mean looks from the mommies that had been waiting in line forever. I felt bad. But then they got a show. Nathan changed his mind and started freaking out. (Another autistic moment) I tried to calm him down and told him he did not have to go up to any of the characters just hold my hand. It made me sad that he was so un-nerved by the characters.
When we got to Donald Duck Nathan said he wanted to get his autograph. I was shocked. So he went up to Donald and when Donald turned he whacked Nathan in the head with his bill. Nathan smiled in the picture then ran over to me and started bawling and said in the saddest little voice, "I am done, get me out of here." The poor kid was just traumatized. We made a not so graceful exit, bypassing the rest of the characters and called it a day as far as characters go.

Trying different Coke flavors from around the world.

For Dinner we had reservations a steak place in the World Showcase call Le Cellier. It was by far the best steak I have ever had, I would say it is even as good as Mahogany's. They also had to die for cheese soup and pretzel bread and whiskey chocolate cake. Jarrett thinks next time we go we should make ressies there for every night.

After dinner we were going to go enjoy the Christmas Candle Light Processional but the kids talked us out of going and we hightailed it to Test Track one more time. A ride in the Space Ship Earth ended our night. Nathan and Madelyn loved Epcot way more than I thought. The crowds were very managable and the weather perfert.

We called it an early night and hit the hot tub and headed in for a good night sleep.