Sunday, May 29, 2011

It's Memorial day weekend.  A time filled with sunshine, bbq's and the beginning of summer.  Unless you live in Idaho and it's been raining and overcast for a week straight.   It's like living in Seattle.
I am so annoyed at the weather.  Mike took Tuesday off so I was settling into a nice 4 day weekend and I had plans!!  A day trip, a new hike to try out and BBQing!!  Until I looked at the weather report.  56 degrees and rainy.  This family doesn't like to sit around too much, so we decided that the closet Taylor has been needing in his room needs to be built.  I haven't done anything-Mike has built the whole thing.  I have been sick, so other than making Taylor's favorite dessert-strawberry rhubarb crisp, I have not done anything.  Haven't used a power tool or lifted much.
Soooo, our weekend has involved junk food and lots of movie watching. It is only Sunday so we're holding out for some sunshine tomorrow, but I'm not holding my breath!
Here are some random pics off my iPhone (I just found out how to download them to my computer without syncing by using the free app -WiFi photo):

teacher gifts-SCHOOL IS DONE!

Oh Harley, don't look so worried

I love succulent plants-we gave these as teacher gifts

these are called devil dogs-delicious!

this is my snack as i get a king pedicure from Hannah

the boys hard at work

Hannah passing the time on an iPad while the closet is being built

taylor passing time reading

Saturday, May 21, 2011

I know it's technically not summer quite yet but today's weather had full sunshine and 70's temperatures and it just got me feelin' ready for some SUMMER.  A big contract I had is being postponed a bit and what a relief off my shoulders.  My workload will be as normal and I can enjoy the kids and summer-ish activities.  I am just so happy.
I got 6 planters full of plants and flowers today and it felt so good sweating out in that hot sunshine.

I have so many plans for summer, do you? What are yours?

It seems whenever I try and make actual goals for summer I go a little crazy and make myself crazy trying to complete it, so here are some things I would like to do, keeping it flexible, just some ideas:

  • At least 2 camping trips
  • Some school workbooks to help keep the kid's mind fresh, plus they can earn extra screen time
  • Swimming lessons
  • I would like the kids to pick three things they want to learn to do: so far the list includes making suckers ( hoping we can amp that up a bit)
  • go to at least two local museums
  • fishing 
  • cooking lessons with the kids where they do more than slice or stir-we're talking actual cooking/baking!  Following a recipe!! 
  • summer reading program at the library-we LOVE our books!
  • lots of bike riding and tennis playing
  • hike to at least 2 NEW places
  • everyone wants more kayaking ( we did it once and they loved it)
  • Mike wants more golfing (I'll drive the cart)
  • We are renting a viola for Taylor to start practicing for band next year-excited about that one!
Sounds like we are going to be pretty busy this summer! One last week of school and then freedom.  Taylor and Hannah are so excited. Oh, to be young again.

I'll be looking just like this:

Friday, May 6, 2011

We just read in the paper today that the star (and singer) of Hannah's favorite show, iCarly, is in concert in August in Eagle. Hannah was sooooo excited and wants to go.

I am pretty picky about what the kids watch on TV and iCarly is very age appropriate without all the stupid things the writers think young kids must want to watch (cussing, sexual stuff, disrespectful behavior).  Plus iCarly, aka Miranda Cosgrove, sings and has videos on after the TV show.  Of course Hannah just loves everything about her and I have to admit, the show is pretty funny and creative.  Interesting fact: Avril Lavine helped write one of her songs.

But I'm just wondering if 8 is too young for a concert?  It's outdoors and I'm sure she would absolutely love it.  My first concert was when I was 19 living in Atlanta and saw the Cranberries.  Yes, I'm old  (Do you have to let it linger? doo doo do do).

The tickets are a total rip-off, but it would give Hannah something to work and save for over the summer.  Goodness knows that child needs to learn how to save money and not spend it the minute it's in her hand.

Oh what to do?  If I do take her, I will have to listen to 90 minutes of teen bop music.  I suggested to Mike it would be a really great father-daughter activity.  I just don't get swept up in a lot of popular culture stuff with the kids, I think it's usually too mature and they grow up too quickly. 

I'll have to think about this one.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I have to post some delicious recipes we've enjoyed the past couple days.
  In case I haven't talked enough about how much I love Catherine Newman's recipes, let me talk some more.  I have been craving the Red Robin chicken fiesta salad (black beans, creamy dressing, grilled chicken) and came across one of her recipes from summer when it's hot and nobody really wants to eat heavy foods.  So this chicken cilantro-lime salad is to die for (cooking note-make sure you use 1/3 cup lime juice and decrease salt to 1 tsp.). I could eat it all year round. I could make just the dressing and eat it on ANY salad.  I made it Sunday night and seriously we just loaded our plates with that salad and it was the meal, no accompaniments.  Because we had such a light meal, I thought Catherine's Brazilian cake would be the perfect dessert.  Again, delicious.  The coffee in the chocolate cake brings out the chocolate-ly flavor.  FYI, Disney fired Catherine (her weekly food blog) but she still posts recipes every Monday for all of us that love her and her food.  I am secretly jealous of the things she feeds her kids and they eat lovingly.  What it would be like to cook and have my kids rave about it?  My secret is out.

one last bite of those pancakes-they were so good
Next up..after seeing Gwyenth Paltrow's cookbook in Target, I wanted it.  Then my Self magazine came with some of her recipes.  So tonight, we tried the pancakes that is a recipe from her Dad.  They were sooooo good.  Gotta love that buttermilk.  Just when I was having some hope for Taylor's taste buds, he says to me after i ask him if he likes the pancakes, "No Mom, they were off, something just wasn't right."  Who is this kid?

BTW-good news: the owner of the company who sent the "apple" tech to my house to work on my computer but didn't do anything is going to refund my $$.  That makes me pretty happy.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

...well as the phrase goes, i had to make some "lemonade" this past week.  My e-mail computer program completely freaked out, crashed and took 6 weeks of e-mail I could NOT get back with it.  My e-mail program I was using was Outlook-this is the first time they've made it for Macs in the new Office Suite that I bought last month.  I liked the interface and thought I would give it a try.  Until it crashed and wouldn't give me back my files.  E-mail is pretty important to my business.  It's how I keep track of clients, how I send them proofs, how they send me changes, how I manage my business.  I tried not to freak out when it crashed. I worked for two days trying to get everything back.  Didn't have copies on the server because I had POP e-mail, and should have an IMAP account.  Should, should, should.  I know now LOTS about e-mail and how each program uses different files.

To make a long story short, I have learned a lot from this experience.  I bought Google business apps to host all my mail instead of keeping it on my domain host's site...which means they keep copies of everything I send, every folder, every e-mail and I can access it from anywhere at anytime.  Converting it took a week and in between I had to use three different e-mail programs to get everything transferred right.  I even thought I would hire someone to come to my house and do it since I was overwhelmed.  I spent $120 on nothing-he knew nothing and didn't get done what I needed! Frustrating yes.  In the end, I learned that these things happen and you just have to dig in and figure it out.  I don't have an IT department, but my sweet hubby did help a lot.

I just sweated it out and now have everything fixed and my e-mail files on my iphone, on my computer, accessible from a web browser.   Still lost those 6 weeks of e-mail but it is a lesson learned.