I Need Some Advice

10 Sep

There is a delicate balance between good and bad at our house in the mornings.  Well, school mornings.

I consider myself a morning person.  Now, I don’t get up the first time the alarm goes off, generally I “snooze” twice (or should I say my husband “snoozes” twice since the alarm is on his side of the bed).  The alarm is set for 5:30 and I am up at 5:44.  Once I am up, I’m up for the day.

My oldest daughter, Shelby, is like me.  When I wake her up in the morning she doesn’t hop right out of bed, but she usually gets up the second time I go in to get her.  Then her first order of business is food.  After that she is very chatty, which annoys Maggie, my middle child.  I have learned over the years that speaking to Maggie in the morning is not a good idea so  I indirectly wake her up.  How does someone “indirectly” wake someone?  Well, the girls share a room so when I wake Shelby up Maggie gets woken up by default.  I make an effort not to speak to Maggie until spoken to.  This is an unspoken (no pun intended) agreement we have.

I know you are all wondering why am I still waking my high school students in the mornings.  We have tried the alarm clock thing but both of the girls just sleep through it.  I am doing them a disservice, of this I am fully aware.

Anyway, my son is a whole other breed of morning person.  Or should I say non-morning person.

This is my son’s motto in the mornings.

I have attempted all manners of waking him up.  I have been all sweet and lovey and huggy kissy.  I have offered up rewards for getting out of bed.  I have handed down punishment for not getting out of bed.  I have tried putting in an alarm clock, which he sleeps through.  For the most part I go in and gently shake him and tell him it’s time to get up.  He groans.  I tell him his choices for breakfast and he always chooses what I don’t have.  He groans.  I start breakfast then go back in to tell him a little bit firmer (and louder) that it is time to get up.  He groans.

By the time I finally get him out of bed he is running late and is mad at the world.  He is mad about picking out his clothes, he is mad about eating breakfast, he is mad because his sisters are in the bathroom (unfortunately the three of them share), he doesn’t want to go to school, he doesn’t want to ride the bus, he doesn’t want to do anything but put his head back under the covers.  Every morning he leaves the house with scowl on his face and thoroughly angry at me.

There are some mornings that I feel like I’m on the verge of snapping but at the same time I feel bad for my son and I hate the thought of him going to school in such a bad mood.  It can’t make for a very productive day.  Some mornings I am certain that I would be shouting at him at the top of my lungs if my husband wasn’t still sleeping (he’s not a morning person either and feels for the little guy).

Today he didn’t even tell me goodbye and almost missed the bus.  I have reached the end of my rope.  I don’t know what else to do.  It doesn’t matter what time he goes to bed, if I have to wake him, he is pissed.  I need some advice.  How do you get your kids out of bed in the morning?  There has to be some trick that I am missing out on.

DIY Amateur

16 Jul

Pinned Image

This is something that Maggie and I say a lot to each other.  We both spend too much time on Pinterest.  It’s my new addiction.  For the most part I pin recipes, home decor, and craft projects.  To be honest I just dream about the craft projects because I am a complete amateur when it comes to do-it-yourself projects.

One particular home decor project caught my eye.  I found it in a couple of different versions and thought to myself, “I can do that”.  So I did (with the help of my husband, of course).

I liked it so much I decided to make two!  The posts themselves were legs for a kitchen island that John picked up at an auction.  John cut and attached the base and top for me. I picked up the finial at our local home improvement store.

We wired up a mason jar, filled it with decorative river rocks and a tealight.  Another version I found had a cute “Welcome” sign hanging on it.  I plan on finding some seasonal plaques to hang on one.  I tried to find some at Hobby Lobby but all they had were fall and Christmas.  All of their summer stuff was gone!  It’s only July people!  Anyway, I’m sure a quick trip to Brown County will bring success.  This was my Instagram photo…..

Thankfully I have a husband that is so handy and talented when it comes to woodworking projects.  I couldn’t have completed this one without his help.

Now, I must hop on over to Pinterest to find some inspiration for my (let’s be real, “our“) next project.

p.s. I already have a home decor project in the works that hasn’t required any assistance from John.  I just need to keep visiting a local business that specializes in antique hardware.  I’ll share pictures when it’s done.

Destiny

15 Jul

My husband and I grew up in different parts of Indiana.  He is from the north and I grew up right in the middle of the state.  We have been married for just over five years now and we live in my hometown.  His parents still live in his hometown.  There is a particular street sign that we pass every time we go to visit his family.

It makes me smile.

Each time we pass it I swear that the next time I am going to bring my camera and take a picture of it.  Well, I finally did!

One of these streets is my maiden name and the other is my married name.  So see, destiny!

Sugar Cream Pie

5 Jul

Did you know that the sugar cream pie is the official pie of the state of Indiana?  Until just a few months ago I had never even tasted it.  My family transplanted to the Hoosier state from Oklahoma, so I’m guessing that is why I never had it.  I grew up on my Grandma’s homemade chocolate cream pie.

My husband has been a Hoosier his entire life and he loves sugar cream pie.  He recently discovered a restaurant in downtown Indianapolis that serves sugar cream pie that is made at a little Zionsville bakery called My Sugar Pie.  Of course he wanted me to figure out how to make it like them.  I was happy to oblige him.  (By the way, that picture up there is a My Sugar Pie photo.  I forgot to take a picture of my version before we finished the whole thing)

My first go at it was a success, or so I thought.  One of the many food blogs that I read posted a recipe for the pie so I gave that one a try.  You can find the recipe here.  It was delicious!  So why wasn’t it a success?  It has vanilla in it.  Hubby says vanilla just makes it a vanilla cream pie, not the same thing.  Of course it did not stop us from eating the whole thing!

Attempt number two was a complete flop.  We threw it away.

You know what they say, third time’s a charm.  Before I share the full recipe with you, I want to share a few details.  Pie #1 was prepared by pre-baking the pie shell, cooking the filling on the stove top, then putting it under the broiler for a minute or two.  Pie #2 was prepared by filling the unbaked pie shell with the cold cream mixture and baking for almost an hour.  Pie #3 is a combination of both of these methods.

After several hours of pouring over hundreds of cookbooks (really it was only about 10 cookbooks and took about half and hour!), I finally stumbled on the recipe I am going to share with you.  Hubby says it doesn’t taste exactly as My Sugar Pie’s version, but it’s pretty darn close!  The recipe was in one of the many “church lady” cookbooks I have.  Those cookbooks really do have the best tried and true recipes from Grandma’s kitchen.  Anyhoots, on with the recipe……..

Sugar Cream Pie

2 cups half & half

1/4 cup cornstarch

1 stick butter (no substitutions!)

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup sugar

cinnamon

nutmeg

9″ unbaked pie shell (I made my own but feel free to use a store-bought shell)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  First, put cornstarch, sugar, and salt in a 2 qt. sauce pan, mix well.  Then add half & half and butter.  Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened.  Pour into an unbaked pie shell.  Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg.  Bake for about 25 minutes.

Allow pie to cool to room temperature then refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.  Store pie covered in the refrigerator.

I guess it’s safe to say that I am officially a Hoosier.  I know how to play Euchre and I really like sugar cream pie.

What?!

3 Jul

So, she hasn’t written a post in over a year and suddenly she writes one that’s kind of a downer!
I know, sorry!
My husband recently asked why I quit writing on my blog. I didn’t have an answer. There are several blogs that I read and they share so much personal stuff. I wasn’t sure if that much sharing was for me and found that the only things I could think to write about might not be that interesting.
I decided I don’t care.
We have interesting things that are going on in our life and I want to share with you. I won’t be boring you on a daily basis just a few times a week.
So, forgive me for being absent so long. See you in a day or two.

Where’s My Mom?

2 Jul

Image

These are my parents.  Isn’t my Mom lovely?  Those glasses are so 1960’s, aren’t they?  My Dad was so handsome, my son looks just like him.

I have only a few vivid childhood memories of my Mom.

I remember begging to sit by her while she was working on the sewing machine and then proceeding to barf grape juice in our laps (I still do not drink purple grape juice).

I remember getting caught sticking my tongue out at cars that drove by my grandparents house and getting my bottom swatted.

I remember telling my Mom that my favorite toy, a wooden cow that mooed when you pulled it, was broken on one particular April Fool’s Day.

I remember showing her how I could do a cartwheel in the living room.

I remember her playing the piano at church.

I remember when she got sick.

I remember almost everything about the day when my Dad told me she had died.  I was 5.

I’m 43, I should be done grieving, right?  Mostly I am.  But, damn-it, there are some days that I just want my Mom!  I just know that if she was still here that I could pick up the phone and share with her how crazy the kids are making me today, or ask for a recipe, or plan to meet her for lunch and shopping, or ask her to come take care of me because I don’t feel well, or just talk about nothing at all.

Now, my Dad remarried and I was raised by a “Mom” and a Dad along with 2 sisters.  But it’s not the same, she was not my Mom.

I don’t want you to feel sorry for me, that’s not why I am sharing this with you.  Once I became an adult, there were many times I was very angry about losing my Mom at such a young age and I felt sorry for myself.  As I have matured, it has become clear to me that it has made me a better Mother.

Why? You ask.  Well, I will share one reason with you…….

My Step-Mother was not a “huggy-kissy” kind of mother.  And not just with me, she was never that way with my step-sisters either.  She is not a huggy-kissy Grandmother.  Me, I am a huggy-kissy kind of mother and I am sure when I have grandkids I will be a huggy-kissy Grandmother too.  This was something that I missed as a child.  All my friends had huggy-kissy Mom’s so I vowed to show that love to my kids when they came along.

My children know that I love them.  My 18 year old daughter still kisses me good-bye (and goodnight), we all tell each other “I love you”, we are very close.  I try to treat my children how I am sure my own mother would have treated me.

Sometimes I wonder if we would have even gotten along.  Would we have fought like cats during my teen-age years?  Would I have done the opposite of everything she said?  Maybe, maybe not.

I guess today I was just missing my Mom.  No reason.  I think about her every day.  I hope that she is proud of the woman I have become.  I know that she is up there watching over me and my family.  One day she will get to meet my wonderful husband, she will get to hug her grand-children, and sit down with me for that lunch.  Hopefully she loves sweet tea just as much as I do!

How to Roast a Marshmallow

26 May

Believe it or not, there is a right and a wrong way to roast a marshmallow.

This is the wrong way…

This is just burnt sugar.  Who wants that?

Roasting a marshmallow takes patience.  My children have learned patience through roasting the perfect marshmallow (of course the reward for their patience is sugar!).

Load up your Hot Dog roaster

Hover your marshmallows high above the hot coals, NOT directly in the flame

Rotate, Rotate, Rotate

When the marshmallow is golden brown in some spots and just about to fall off the roaster, it is ready.

I promise you, if you can wait for the marshmallow to look like this, all of the work is worth it.  The centers are liquid marshmallow.  I love a marshmallow roasted like this so much that I don’t even bother with the chocolate bar and graham cracker!

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