This year, we thought Halloween was going to be a free food day...one where the children can eat whatever they want, have a party, have cupcakes...BUT, it's not. The teachers voted for Valentine's Day to be our free food day.
I had fully prepared to make Halloween mummy cupcakes and some other cool stuff. Strike that...reverse it....
So now, if you would like to provide a treat, it has to be something the kids can put in their backpacks to take home and not eat at the school.
We made these.....
Cute little ghostly bags filled with marshmallows. Those are super cool to eat, but even cooler to throw at your brother!
Ok, so yesterday was not a great planning day for me. There are so many things going on right now that my brain feels like a giant scrambled egg! Thank goodness for friends and co-PTO workers that are of super help right right now. I think we are down to a mental game...worrying, planning, hoping...all that jazz.
And I was really wanting to hit up Body Pump at the gym last night...until I realized that there were no capes or Superhero outfits in my boys' closet last night. Up until then, I had been busy shopping for Bunco stuff (tonight), laminating signs for Fall Festival, paying vendors, writing newsletters, cooking dinner, making marshmallow treat bags for the boys' classes (pics to come on those later)...just a non stop day. Thank you to my girl, Carmela...who is a HUGE help right now!!!!
So I ran into my craft cabinet and found just a little bit of fabric left from THIS project...enough to throw together two quick, short capes for Superhero Day at school today. Remember, we have overextended ourselves this year....so I have no budget for crafts right now...like....none. Buying a cape or costume was not an option...and dang, their Halloween costumes won't work this year.
Here is what I did....
Took some felt and freehanded the Batman logo on felt and fabric glued them together.
Then I took the small piece of black fleece and wrapped it around my kiddo and guestimated. Remember, I am not a sewer and am not big on the details so I just wanted to get something on his shoulders!
I cut the edges on an angle to accommodate his arms.
I used fabric glue to make a rod pocket of sorts and ran some yellow ribbon through it.
Then, I scrunched it up a little bit and dabbed a bit of fabric glue to the ends of the pocket so the ribbon would be secure.....and added some velcro to the ends.
Last, I glued the Batman logo to the back and put it on him.
I followed the same directions to make Caleb's....although he wanted his cape to say Star Wars....whatever kiddo.
They were actually excited to wear them this morning to school. Jansen was talking about how he hopes his classmate, who loves Batman, will like his cape. We will see!
Red Ribbon Week is in full swing at our school. Here is what we have had so far:
Monday- Wear Red
Tuesday- Crazy hat, hair, or sock day
Wednesday- Sports team day
I didn't get a picture of my boys wearing red this week, but I did get some of the hats and jerseys. The boys chose their hats and chose not to do crazy socks....I was bummed but they are the ones that have to wear them, not me.
Jansen wore his Goofy hat we got at Disney World when he was 2.
He thought that it was Monster Mutt Dalmation and ran around the park in a diaper, t-shirt, and hat yelling Monster Mutt Dalmation in his cute 2-year old lisp.
Today, instead of wearing the traditional Texans jerseys, Nana got them A&M jerseys (Gig Em) and they chose to wear those. :)
On to tomorrow....Super Hero day. I have yet to figure out what they will do for it. Maybe just wear a superhero shirt. They don't have a costume or anything...and I am not buying anything new right now. I am sure we can dig something out of the back of their closets to work.
Our school's festival is coming up November 4th and we are in full crazy planning mode. Most of the things that we got out of storage were not usable, and because the past few years nothing has changed, we are trying to come up with new games and start all over. That adds a lot of extra pressure in the short term...but hopefully will make subsequent years easier.
We took a trip to our storage building to see what games we had left over, and to get rid of the things that were no longer functional. We found two different games that I knew I could revamp and make useful. We are a small school that has a large majority of the "economically disadvantaged", so our budget is tight. We have to revamp where we can.
Originally this game was a Wheel of Fortune type game for Earth Day.
It had the earth painted in the center and had activities all around the edges. It was made well, but didn't function for Earth Day anymore.
So I decided to repaint and add some fun prizes just for something extra for the kids to do, and came up with this.....
It will be sitting right next to our PTO table at the festival where we take memberships, sell shirts, and advertise. Not bad for FREE!
Today I finally gave in and started menu planning for the next month. I have gotten way too relaxed and haven't planned anything in months, but with our mounting expenses, I really have to reign it in and get serious.
There were some pretty good deals this morning at the grocery store...made sure I checked their website before I grabbed my coupons and made my list. I am so not an extreme couponer...I just want to save where I can.
So here are the meals that I came up with for the next month:
Spaghetti with meat sauce and garlic bread
Meatloaf with scalloped potatoes
Hobo dinners with potatoes and carrots
Fried chicken strips and mashed potatoes
Hot dogs and tator tots
Sausage with broccoli and mac and cheese
Breakfast for dinner
Cold spaghetti salad
Stuffed bell peppers
Chicken stir fry with rice
Fajitas and refried beans
Hamburger helper and veggies
Chicken helper and veggies
Planning 20 meals gives us the chance to pick from the list and still have several days of leftovers.
Lunches for the kids include sandwiches, goldfish, chips, and muffins.
Breakfasts include: cereal, oatmeal, scrambled eggs and toast, cinnamon rolls, and homemade kolaches.
Today was a personal grocery best! For our meals listed above, without having to return to the store for our perishables such as milk and more fruit as the month goes on...I spent $169. I have never spent less than $200 a month, but today I cashed in almost $40 of coupons :). YAY!!!
I will have to go back to the store next week, because I am hosting bunco and I want to get some fresh items to make a salad and such.
Yep, it broke. The day after the dentist tells us about our upcoming orthodontia woes, our couch completely broke in the middle. All the metal underpieces are shattered. UGH!
Josh and I both had totally different opinions on what we wanted to replace it with. This is no easy decision. It's an investment. You and guests sit on your couch every day.
The problem was, the layout of our living room makes things tricky as far as furniture placement goes. Certain things will work and other things will not.
So, I was more interested in something leather, or a combo of fabric and leather, a couch with a chaise, or some type of sectional. No loose back pillows!!!!
Josh wanted recliners. He wanted a couch with two recliners but the recliners in front of the TV. I was ok with that, but the space to put the couch would be too small. There would be no other way to even get into the living room short of leaping over said couch! AND he also wanted a fabric couch. HMMMMMM
We took a trip to our local furniture store with open minds. We sat in every couch, loveseat, sectional, and recliner in the store, and discussed all the logistics for every option possible. UGH.
We decided against the sectional because we couldn't find one that would be the right scale for the room. We decided against separate recliners because we would have to get a loveseat instead of the couch, thus lose seating. We finally agreed to look for a couch with built in recliners.
In the end, we found one. The heavens opened, the clouds parted, and a light shone bright on the couch that was ours. It is microfiber, but has the look of leather. COMPROMISE. It has two recliners built in with a matching loveseat with recliners. COMPROMISE. It has solid, comfy backs. YAY FOR ME. AND it has the hidden console with lights, vibrating seats, cupholders, and a cooler for drinks. YAY FOR JOSH.
This couch is a true combination of both my husband and I. We each got what we wanted. We bought the one right off the floor and got a REALLY good discount on it but we have to order the loveseat. That is fine with me, because that gives us time to sell our current loveseat.
So here are our boys playing with all the gadgets on the couch in the store....
And here it is welcomed into our living room.
We can no longer have the coffee table we have now...so maybe I will replace it with something smaller later...or maybe not. We shall see.
So today was our childrens' 6 month dental checkups...both of which, turned out well for now. No cavities, good hygiene, and prizes all around.
BUT...and it is a BIG BUT.....
One hygienist told me Caleb will be needing braces in about 2 years...
and the other hygienist told me Jansen will need a retainer next year to help correct a tongue thrust problem.
Although the thrust is so much better than it was last year, it is creating some problems with the spacing of his teeth as well as his bite.
OH BOY! JOY OF JOYS!
Both hygienists said, "Start saving now."
Thank you Lord that we have insurance, both medical and dental. We are blessed that my husband has a good job with good benefits....but several dental procedures and accessories are not covered...such is life.
So tomorrow I change my Christmas Club Account to a Caleb and Jansen's Dental Account.
My husband and I are big Straight No Chaser fans. If you have not heard of them....you should totally youtube them. What a fantastic group! Last year we purchased two of their Christmas albums on itunes and loved every second of it.
Several months ago, we saw that they were coming to Houston and so we bought tickets. Josh and I usually get out a couple times a year to spend the weekend just the two of us...and this was one of those weekends.
We left Saturday afternoon and checked in to the Four Seasons Hotel. Yes, the Four Seasons!!!
For a moment, I felt like a Real Housewife of Richwood....staying in a suite, eating at the fancy hotel restaurant, Quattro, and riding around in the hotel car...a BMW.
We enjoyed the concert and then visited The House of Blues for snacks and good music.
This morning we were able to drive down the street to visit my cousin's new baby, Caroline, and my husband's grandfather who is in the hospital.
Shame to have to come back to the reality of all the PTO stuff that still needs to get down in preparation of our school's festival in November. Boy, I will be so ready for it to be over! :) But it will be totally fun!!!!
Yesterday was the first time Caleb has ever been invited to a sleep-over. While I was very nervous for him, he was very excited. I could just see how being in a different room at night, too many kids, not having his certain lovey items because this will make fun of him, not having his bedtime routine, etc, etc, etc would make the evening difficult for him. Honestly, my hope was that he would be influenced by the other boys there and adapt.
So the plan was for Caleb to go to the party, and my mom to watch Jansen while I went to the movies with my friend, Carmela. Welllllll, it didn't quite happen that way. I dropped the boys off at my mom's so that I could take Carmela to the hospital. She is a surrogate and is due any day now.
After a few hours at the hospital, she was sent home on bedrest, we picked up some Freebrids and trekked home. I got home to an empty house (other than the dog) and crashed.
My husband came home from working graveyards this morning to wake me up saying that I could sleep late. Ugh. He woke me up at 6am to tell me that I could sleep late. And then proceeded to tell me that Caleb didn't make it all night and that my parents picked him up late last night. That drives me insane. Don't wake me up to tell me I can sleep late. Let me sleep and write me a note on the fridge. UGH!
So I called to talk to Caleb because I know he wakes up at the crack of dawn, and he and my dad were eating breakfast tacos. He said that he had an awesome time eating pizza and telling jokes to the other boys. He was so excited that they laughed at his jokes, although they didn't really make sense...so they could have been laughing at him...but he wouldn't have known and I wouldn't tell him otherwise anyway.
He just couldn't handle the darkness of the room and not having his routine. I told him that I was extremely proud of him for trying and that he did great in making it so many hours. He seemed ok with it all, so that was good. No major meltdown but just missing home. And he was coughing a lot...which is totally strange since he wasn't coughing at all at home....maybe allergies.
Anyway, Caleb's 1st sleep-over is in the books...no Autistic craziness noted. Success!!!!!
Today, I got a haircut and a little new color! YESSSSSS.
The girl cut off a little over 6 inches of hair. If it had been a few inches longer we could have donated the hair to Locks of Love. Dang....
But....I did get a couple hot pink extensions put in...and the proceeds from that goes to the Mermaid Project, which is local foundation that works with people dealing with breast cancer. Such a fantastic program in our area. If you would like more information of the Mermaid Project, visit their website....HERE
So here are the results....
I am so happy with it! Amanda at UrbanEve did a phenomenal job!!!! Urban Eve is a salon that is totally civic minded, locally and globally. They have a boutique that features products that are made by and benefit women in Africa..how cool is that?! The salon is always making contributions to local schools, other countries, etc. I love it!!!! Anyway, that is just my two cents...I think they are pretty spectacular.
Problem....this weekend I sort of got into the Fall spirit, but couldn't find the box of Fall decorations. GRRRRRR....
And I am really trying hard not to buy anything new since we have several things we are saving for and trying to pay off. Dave Ramsey and I have been in a big time struggle for the past several months. He is going to win, logically I know he should, but I am still fighting it.
Something must seriously be wrong with me. I just cannot get into the Fall spirit.
Maybe it is because its still in the high 90s here. Maybe it is because we have been so busy.
But today, I took a trip to one of my favorite stores....Hobby Lobby to purchase the prizes for Bunco, which I am hosting in a few weeks. Normally, the store makes me tingle...in a good way. But today, I just felt overwhelmed with all of the pumpkins and Christmas trees.
Every aisle had something seriously cute on it, but I didn't buy anything. I doubt I will even decorate my house for fall at all this year. Bah Humbug.
Where did my crafty groove go? If someone finds it, send it back!!!!
This weekend is yet another Texans game, and I am making dessert for this tailgating session.
Um, sweet deliciousness, your name is blueberry. It is probably my favorite fruit flavor. From pancakes to scones, and muffins to bagels...add blueberry to it and it becomes the greatest food ever made. The smell of baking blueberry is just heavenly.
Second to blueberry is its friend, cherry...my boys' favorite flavor. So we split the difference and I made one of each.
This is the easiest and yummiest ever!
Here is what you will need:
1 can of crushed pineapple, undrained
1 can of cherry pie filling
1 stick of butter
1 box of yellow cake mix
Dump the can of pineapple in the bottom of a baking pan. Spread the can of pie filling evenly over the top of the pineapple. Cover the top with the dry cake mix. Cut the butter into small thin squares and arrange on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour.
For the blueberry one, just eliminate the pineapple and then follow the layering directions.
Oh boy, that pineapple is so delicious with the cherry! Straight blueberry is still my fave.
This can be served cold, room temp...but best warm with ice cream!!!!! Heaven in a pan for sure!