Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
Haven't these fall temperatures been amazing? I love walking outside and thinking, "hmmmm, I need a jacket." The mornings are crisp and cool; I even saw my breath today. I am really looking forward to fall this year. I can't wait to see Reese in her cutie little Halloween costume. I want to go on a hayride and go get pumpkins to carve. I did buy one yesterday that we painted and Reese played with it all day. She really liked the gourds at Hyvee but I wasn't sure what to do with it once I got home.
I am hoping to go to make some homemade canned applesauce and maybe even those apples that are all red when you bite into them. I have no idea what they're called so someone help me out if you know what I'm thinking of.
The part of fall I am most looking forward to is Reese's birthday. I just can't believe we made it a whole year. It has just flown by, but it's been a good time too. I can't wait to see her tear into her birthday cake and look at all her presents. I doubt she will care too much about them though, she has a room full of toys and tonight she sat and played with a piece of tape she found in the closet for 45 minutes. Seriously, a piece of tape, scotch tape even....
So, yay for fall! Bring on the hoodies!!
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
Thursday, September 16, 2010
So, tune in next week for recaps of our fabulous weekend in Breckenridge, hopefully you will be as delighted as we are!
Monday, September 13, 2010
Sunday, September 12, 2010
I put some cinnamon in too to give it a little extra flavor. But you must cream together the sugar and butter. Add an egg, vanilla and 2 ripe bananas. Finally add the dry ingredients and continue to mix until it resembles a mixture. It kind of looks like thick cake batter and it's very soft so make sure you use a cold pan when you make additional batches.
After I mixed them all up, I baked them for 10 minutes at 350. I mixed up some icing but there was no recipe because I had a tub of frosting that I just added some cinnamon and brown sugar to, but there is a recipe that I will list below. Here is a shot of my little helper. Instead of mixing today she made sure nothing escaped the refigerator. Please excuse the mismatched outfit. It's laundry day and earlier in the morning I let her play with tupperware filled with water. It was fun but a little sloppy.
The cookies are amazing. Light and fluffy almost like cake. They were a perfect little snack to use up those overripened bananas. Finally, we were ready to take our picnic outside. We feasted on our delicious banana cookies and examined the leaves. We also enjoyed the sun and just laid back to relax.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
So, the disaster I came home to tonight was this:
7 ponytail holders
9 pairs of shoes/flip flops
5 separate socks none with a match
1 set of stacking cups
6 sacks or bags of some kind
15 (yep you read that right) DVD cases
1 torn up box of Chex granola bars
1 lone brown toddler shoe of which a match has yet to be found
I'm sure you can sympathize with me. I'm sure that some of you my pity my lack of house cleaning skills. In my defense, the dogs did do some of this mess. And I have to say, it is tiring enough just keeping her away from things that are unsafe and not edible that when she opens cabinets and grabs for handfuls of movies. But the bottom line is; although it may look like we had a break in, or a police raid, or a bomb detonation you rest assured that we are safe. It is just another messy day in the Neal house.
Friday, September 10, 2010
The point is, Miranda sings Famous in a Small Town. It's really just about Brookfield or Meadville or wherever.
"'Round here you get just as much attention, cheering at the high school football game."
Really this is true. Every fall Friday night I felt like a celebrity. The crowd's eyes were in my (general) direction. I had 15 minutes of fame as the cheerleading captain and Homecoming Queen candidate.
"Every grandma, in-law, ex-girlfriend maybe knows it just a little too well."
Okay, I can think of at least 6 examples of this statement. Everybody has their story to tell of the version of the town gossip. Sure, gossip starts somewhere, but usually it's along the grapevine that the juicy details are stated. And I'm sure somewhere when Dustin and I got together the switchboards lit up.
I think she conveys her point pretty well in this song. Every small town has a little story going on behind the scenes. Someone's pregnant or broken up or getting married. Everybody has their small town story of something that made them famous (or infamous). Some stories are better than others. Some stories can be told on the internet, some are best left for the memories of a fall bonfire. But all this talk of stories and memories leaves me to wonder, what makes you "famous?"
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
I have heard stories of fights, jail, football rivalries, swimming lessons in the middle of a pond, cats and gasoline (don't even ask), and brotherly love. People come up to me all the time with a new story about my dad. And at holidays we all love to sit around and listen to the stories of the brothers. It is especially entertaining after a few beers and when they are all there to help each other tell their side of the story.
My grandma always used to say, "I shoulda wrote a book." And oh how I would love it. I can't even imagine how funny it would be if all the Olinger boys got together and wrote down their take on childhood. Unfortunately, one is missing and I doubt any of them are too interested in typing but maybe one day all the grandkids will get together and write down the hilarious anecdotes of 5 crazy kids who onery, beer drinking, and loveable. Oh and the best seller it would be!
Monday, September 6, 2010
Anyway, yesterday was a big day of milestones. She of course turned 10 months but she decided to celebrate by getting another tooth, saying her first consonant sounds of ba ba ba and da da da. She is saving Ma ma ma for the next one so that it can be her first word that has meaning. But she also began standing up completely on her own too!
We have seen her gain so much independance and she has become so scientific. She studies everything and usually runs the mouth test on most objects. She can feed herself and eats almost everything we eat. And of course, applesauce is still her favorite. She really loves to help me put on my make-up in the morning and to tip over her toy box.
Each passing day, our little stinker has won our hearts a little more. She lays her head on our shoulder and all transgressions are forgotten. Her giggles are like little rays of sunshine and to say that we live for that huge two-tooth grin would be an understatement. So, happy 10 months of Reese and to thousands more milestones to celebrate!
Thursday, September 2, 2010
1. Girl drama starts early. I had none of this last year because well, they were perfect. Today I had a sobbing, hysterical girl because someone said she was "dating" someone....ahhh jeez.
2. I would gladly take a class of 15 boys and 5 girls instead of the other way around. Not so lucky on that this year.
3. Parents love spelling tests. Every year I get a call as to why I don't do this particular part of school. I'm not going to go into depth as to my philosophy on this subject, I just don't do it. You can spell or you can't. If you can, good for you, if you can't, well, there's always spell check.
4. Ending a story by saying, "...and then I went to bed" is NOT an effective ending.
5. I have had many siblings in the past 7 years. Last year I had almost 7 kids who also had a sibling in my class. But this year I cannot call J anything but L; luckily he doesn't seem to mind. (This is also the family that I saw at the bar once when I was absolutely too drunk to be around kids, the boy in my class was only 2 at the time. In my defense, they had a baby in a bar.)
6. Kids are surprisingly obedient when you phrase directions in a Simon Says game.
7. Pencil sharpening is always a battle.
8. The kids you loved the most always come visit.
9. Some kids just need more hugs than others. And if you stand in my dance space and expect a hug constantly, you are probably going to get on my nerves really fast.
10. I'm gonna give Jenny Y. a little amen here when I say, Silly Bands are best left at home.
So, there are good things about this year. There is definitely a lot of training to be done still. Will they be an epic class like last year? No, probably not. Will they turn out to be a little better from where they started? I'd like to think so. And let's hope they blow the MAP test out like we did last year, that would be even better!
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Do you know that "160" constitutes a BIG deer? I do.
Do you know what Scent Blocker, Drury Outdoors, and Mossy Oak are all selling? I do.
And do you know why I know these things? Because I live with a hunter. An avid hunter. An avid-hunter who watches the Outdoor Channel like it's the Food Network. For the past month we have watched every hunting show imaginable. EVERY STINKING ONE!
I have taken up the Kardashians in response to this behavior.
Soon I will become a single mother to the woods. I will spend my weekends alone because I cannot bear to pack up the car and go home another weekend. I will probably end up throwing at least one temper tantrum due to the neglect I am feeling.
You see, my outdoorsman husband refuses to be lured into any activity outside of hunting that he is not expressly interested in. He doesn't visit friends, or come in early for a party. And if you catch him on opening weekend of gun season....well, you might as well save your invitation.
He does have one tiny little commitment falling around November 5th, however.