Saturday, March 31, 2012

What's For Dinner? Week 12: Crockpot Italian Chicken

This meal was extremely easy (hooray for the crockpot!) and was very tasty....it was a good "comfort meal".  The only problem that I had with it was that there wasn't more color in the pasta/chicken/sauce combo, as all 3 of those things are essentially the same color.  I know, I know....I am a little crazy.  For next time, I think I will use the tri-colored noodles. =)


I got this recipe from Pinterest, although there doesn't seem to be a direct link to it.  Recipe is as follows:

4 chicken breasts
1 packet Zesty Italian dressing seasoning
1 8 oz. cream cheese (softened)
2 cans cream of chicken soup
  1. Place chicken in crock pot; cover with remaining ingredients.
  2. Cook on low for 4 hours. 
  3. If sauce is too thick, add a little milk (we didn't need to do this). 
  4. Serve over pasta. 
  5. Sprinkle with shredded (not grated!) Parmesan cheese.

YUM!


Friday, March 30, 2012

Spring Break Fun


We have been on Spring Break this week.  Caleb did not have school, and we didn't have our typical Thursday morning ministry commitment at church.  I steered clear of places like the zoo and Monkey Joe's, as I knew those places would be packed with other Spring-Breakers, but we still had a fun week.  And, for the most part, we can hit those spots any time of the year....that's just one (of the many) reasons it's great to be a stay-at-home mom.

We did a couple of Easter-y crafts.

First, we blew up water balloons, painted them with Mod Podge, and covered them with tissue paper squares.  Pretty eggs.  (Caleb is super excited about the big bag of water balloons we have, and can't wait for the weather to warm up again so we can use them as they are intended to be used....).

 

 

Then, we made another (2D) version.


Meredith's is the one on the left.  The other 3 are C's.

 

The kids go in spurts with playing Wii.  Meredith is really into Wii Golf right now, and is actually quite good!  Shane tries really hard to play along, and swings his arms around just like his Big Brother and Sissy do.  That's Baby S. laying on the carpet....we have been caring for him (through Safe Families) for the past week.



One day, we went with our neighbor friends to a nearby park.  It's a couple of neighborhoods away, so it was a special adventure to venture over there, since we typically just play at the parks in our own neighborhood.  We packed our lunches and had a picnic and of course played!

It was windy.  As evidenced by little Einstein's hair here:


This girly loves to swing.



The kids especially love the tire swing.





Shane loves to go down the slides.  Even especially the big ones.  He is so proud when he makes it to the top of the stairs, and then he turns himself around to go down the slide backwards on his belly.







Slide races.


Climbers.


Another day, we took a little road trip to see my good friend Nicole and her 5 sweet kiddos.  I love spending time with them! We met "in the middle" at her parents' house, and we all had a wonderful time.  Caleb, especially, just loves Nic's boys and was just giddy about running & jumping & checking out the trucks and dirt and burn pile with them. =)

Our kids jumped on a trampoline for the first time...needless to say, they loved it.



 We played and picnicked at the park...




 Part of the crew...


 The boys loved watching this guy dump rocks & dirt...


Caleb picked this gorgeous tulip for me.  It was extremely sweet & thoughtful, but then we had to explain to him that it's not a good idea to pick flowers from the neighbor's lawn. =)


Oh, and this week Meredith learned to draw a stick person. Immediately after she drew it the first time, she looked at it and said "he's sad".  Notice the tuft of hair at the top....such amazing attention to detail! =)


Monday, March 26, 2012

Luke 10:27

Monthly Memory Verse for March:

Luke 10:27
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and love your neighbor as yourself.

video

video

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Letter Spoons

 I came across this idea via Pinterest (original idea found here).  It is obviously incredibly simple to put together. It is a fun and low-maintenance and actually fairly quiet (yay!) activity.  Even though my kids already know their upper and lowercase letters, it's a great reinforcement of letter recognition, and would obviously be a great way to help teach letter identification in the first place! And, it's spoons!  What could be more exciting than that?! ;)


 






What's For Dinner? Week 11: Garlic & Brown Sugar Chicken

 It was easy.  It was good.  Recipe here.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Magnets & Felt

 MAGNETS

Ever since we got a new fridge some months back and learned it is not magnetic, I have been sort of mourning the loss of that magnetic play space for the kids.  I say sort of because I actually really enjoy the fridge's front being free and clear of clutter.  But still, having a place for the kids to play with magnets is fun and sometimes very practical, and I missed it.

 I recently came across this idea (via Pinterest, of course!) and have been wanting to do it for weeks.  I finally put it together this week....it was super easy!

1 Oil Drip Pan 
(I got mine at Wal-Mart in the auto section.) 
1 1/2 yards of thin fabric 
(Make sure it's thin so that the magnets still work.)
+
A hot glue gun
+
 3M Picture Hanging Strips
=
A fun and big and relatively cheap magnet board for the kids!

 


Some tips, if you decide to make this:  

You might want to iron the fabric before putting it on.  I envisioned pulling the fabric really taught so that the wrinkles were released, but then realized that if I pulled it too tight, the magnets wouldn't stick, as the fabric would no longer be flush with the front surface of the pan. By the time I figured this out, I had already glued half of the fabric edges to the back of the pan, and didn't want to start over.  

Plus, I HATE to iron.  Hopefully the wrinkles just go away with time. =)

FELT

Remember this felt board that we put together a while ago?  Well, we haven't used it in a long time, as that particular shelf has been situated with its back to the wall.  Well, we've once again done some rearranging, and the felt board is visible.  This time, I wanted to have some felt letters for the kids to play around with. The thought of cutting out an entire alphabet by hand was not appealing, and I knew it would look awful.  So, I actually bought 2 inch felt letters from JoAnn's.  The only problem was they are peel and sticks, so they of course wouldn't work on our board.  To remedy that, I stuck all of the peel-and-stick letters (and numbers) to some other pieces of felt and then cut out around them. 




I am excited about all of the ways these spaces can be used in the months to come!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

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