August 30, 2011

Why I Snap....

I love photography.  For me, it's the only way I can stop those fleeting moments.  I know that I cannot literally stop time, however, I have a still of that exact second.  It seems my monkeys have grown so quickly.  Photography gives me proof that they weren't born 6' tall.  It gives me proof that I have run them to countless baseball, basketball, football and gymnastic practices.

I love photography because..... it allows me to stop moments in my life.  My wee little brain is only capable of storing so much.  Pictures revive my memory.  They tell me..."Oh yeah, I remember going to the park to walk trails with the kids".  Just silly memories that are usually only important to my family and friends.  

Photography also calms me.  Yesterday morning I went for a walk around Rocky Ridge Farm.  I took Mr. T, my faithful steed, and my iphone.  I didn't want to lug around my bulky Canon.  I learned that taking a walk with the idea of snapping pictures, helped me open my eyes.  I looked for things that were interesting......pretty......different.  Without my phone, I would have stared at my shoes.  That, friends, is not as fun.  Especially since they were soaking wet with morning dew.  

So, I thought I would share with you some recent iphone pictures.  I used vintage filters on all of them with a free app called Instagram.  

Gracie and I having a little mustache fun.

The woods in our bottom field.

A rising sun.

A lilly pad seed pod.  

A small patch of thistle.

My good ole' dog

The carnival at the MO State Fair

This is the first hydrangea that has lasted more than a year at my house.  They are my favorite flower but for some reason, they don't like me!

Gracie eating cotton candy at the Royals game.

Sheep nestled in their pens at the MO State Fair

My giant son who towers over me now.  

A rooster that really should be living at my house.  

August 26, 2011

Not So Bloggie

Now that the kids are in school, I'm finding I have more time to blog.  
That's a good thing.
Except, I'm not feeling so bloggie.  I'm not sure that I have ever been speechless before.   Even worse, my annoying sarcasm has left me.  I know, I'm shocked too.

So, I've always found that when I'm not feeling so wordy, a top 10 is the answer!!!!
So here goes...........

1.  I had the oil changed in my SUV today.  My "oil change required" light has only been blinking for three weeks or so.  (ahem)  I was waiting in the lobby when the service man told me my rig was finished.  He said, "We gotter' finished.  Everything looks good.  You might want to put mouse poison in your garage though, because we found dog food and poopie in your air filter."  NICE!  EMBARRASSING!  I'm getting an outdoor cat by the way.  Maybe three or four of them.  Maybe ten or twelve.

2. I'm reading a book that I'm not too excited about.  It's called "100 cupboards".  The OCD in me won't let me quit until I finish it.  This may be the first time that I've started a series and only read one.  I am not, I repeat, I AM NOT, cracking the spine of the second and third book.  Please remind me I said this.

3.  My red-head has his first 2011 football game tonight.  Around 10:00 p.m., he handed me his home/away jerseys, and said, "I need my name sewn on these by tomorrow morning".  Since I'm not  a seamstress, I worked till 12:00 a.m. on them.  
Me + no sleep = grouchy!!!!!

4. I'm excited to watch the very first episode of Pioneer Woman Saturday morning.  I may tape it and watch it later.  Still not sure what I will be doing this weekend.

Here is the link to a sneek peek of the show

5. These made me laugh this week and I couldn't resist sharing.
6. A dear, sweet lady named Carolyn is always treating our family with her baking.  She visits Rick at his office in Norborne and sometimes brings goodies.  One of our favorite things is her cookies.  They are gigantic and scrumptious.  She has brought us two pecks of peaches recently and I'm so glad to get them.  I plan on making a cobbler or a pie out of them.  I made jam out of the first batch.
If you read this Carolyn, thank you......thank you.....thank you!  You're the best and we adore you!

In case you're wondering......(which I'm sure you are not), I've been experimenting with food photography.  It's kinda fun.

7. I am still making breakfast each morning for the monkeys.  I wake up at 6:00 a.m. to get everything started.  I made bacon and egg cups yesterday morning and they were delish.........and easy!!!!  I will put the recipe at the bottom of this post in case you are interested.  

8. An organization bug has bit me.  That usually happens about three times a year.  All my drawers are getting a make over........and I like it.  

9. I just found someone who is bringing me two outdoor kitties.  Yeah!!!  No more dog food in the air filters.  That, my friends, is reason to celebrate!

10. I am stalking Pinterest and Martha Stewart for Halloween decorating ideas.  Yup, I know........I'm crazy! 

Bacon and Egg Cups

1 package of pre-made pie crust
1/2 lb. bacon (or 6 slices), cooked and crumbled  (I cut my bacon up into tiny pieces before I cook it.  I think that makes it easier.  It's completely up to you though.)
12 eggs
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Unroll pie crusts and cut circles with a large mouth cup.  Put the circles into a greased muffin pan.  Press the dough into the holes to form a cup.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs.  You can add the cheese now but I like to put it into each cup so they are consistent.  

Fill each muffin pan cup half full of egg mixture.  
Add cheese, onion, bacon, sausage, peppers, mushrooms....whatever your little heart fancies.  

Bake for 20 minutes until the crust is light brown.  

August 24, 2011

Fish and Polliwogs

I'm loving the new underwater camera that Rick bought me.  Such a sweet hubby, he is.

August 19, 2011

Back to School

Rick and I sent the monkeys back to school.  

We have survived three mornings of 6:00 a.m. wake-ups.  So good!
I'm trying my hardest to digest having a sophmore......8th grader.......and a 4th grader.  Holey Moley, how in the world?  
I've decided to step up my maternal duties and make more breakfasts for the kiddos.  So far, I've made what I call "Popeye" eggs
Remember this guy?  I still cannot look at Popeye without thinking of Robin Williams

B&G (a no-fail).  By the way, I would rather unclog a toilet than clean up a skillet of cold gravy.  Just saying.

and good ole' bacon, eggs and biscuits.

On the first day of school I like getting pictures of the kiddos.  They, on the other hand, do not like getting pictures.  Well, maybe Gracie does, but the boys DO NOT!  They sigh.....the stomp their feet......they complain.....then they give me sour looks while I snap the picture.

I started saying strange things and talking in Chinese.  
They think their mom is a nerd.  
For the most part, I am.  
I cannot help it.  
I keep telling them when they have monkeys, they will become a nerd also.  It's the way God designed us.  

It's the 11th commandment.  Moses ran out of room on the tablet.

So, after a filling breakfast, I drove them down the driveway and waited for the bus.  I watched them get on and drive away.  
Then I had a little "woe is me" session because I missed them a little.  
Then I walked around the house and assessed all the work that had accumulated over the Summer.
Then I thought......"I can always start talking to Gus again........or myself". 

August 18, 2011

Tenderloin Challenge

Ian Smith
Kyle Ross
Lane Bonderer
Alex Kelly
Zach Foyt

An stuff your face, forget all your table manners, eat till' you vomit contest.  (sounds fun, huh?)

Our local grocery store (Hy-VEE)

The winner gets his/her meal for free, a coveted photo in the Hy-Vee hall of fame, and a t-shirt.  Other than that......I'm not sure why you would do this.

Let me explain.......Ian's birthday is May 19th.  This always falls on the last week of school.  The Smith's take their annual family vacation the day after school gets out.  Which means.........Ian's birthday party usually gets postponed.  :(  Ian also took a week vacation with his Grandma and Grandpa Smith to Washington D.C., then a middle school mission trip to Sedalia, MO, and lastly, he went to Nashville, TN with his confirmation class from church.  Needless to say, our middle child has been well traveled this summer.  So, it's now August and Ian is just now getting his party.  

1. You are given 30 minutes to consume all the food on your plate.
2. Your food will weight nearly five pounds.
3. You may remove only a few vegetables.
4. You vomit, your out!

Alex never really made it to far.  He took the "Mandy" approach, I will nibble and appear like I'm eating a bunch.  Meanwhile, watching everyone else make idiots of themselves".

I never figured out Lane's stragedy.  Mid-way through the contest, he piled 30 french fries on his sandwich ('cause it wasn't thick enough already).

Ian dove into the food with full force.  Ten minutes into the contest, he had all his fries gone and over half of his sandwich.  I started to think that this might be possible.  I would be such a proud mother of a food eating champion.  Once this occured to me, I started rooting him on.  "Come on Ian, you can do it"!  "Don't slow down Ian"!  "Eat baby, eat"!!!!!!!

With ten minutes left, Ian started making strange faces.  Faces that said, HOLY COW, I am miserable!  Some of his faces said, I may lose everything I've ate in the past 20 minutes.  Then other faces said, TAKE ME TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM,  STAT!!!!!!!!!!!!

Kyle started making some of these faces too.  Although I hadn't ate a bite,  I wanted to vomit everytime I saw his plate.  It was more like five pounds of food and three pounds of ketchup.  Blech!

Lane and Zach are still smiling!  That's a good sign!

The water finally stopped washing down Ian's food.  He hit a brick wall.  No amount of belching could save him now.

Very attractive.......I'm so proud!

My cheering stopped working, there was no way he was going to take another bite.  As a matter of fact, he had the last bite in his mouth for five minutes.  I reduced myself to bribery.  I offered him money, I offered to take his trash duty for the next three times, and I believe I offered him cherry pie (that was probably not the best timing on my part).  He couldn't bring himself to swallow anything else.

I'm thankful that he is laughing........and not puking!

Before I left the grocery store, I bought trash bags for the ride home.  Just in case!