Saturday, March 31, 2012

Saturday Morning Chef

We are reaching new levels of independence in the Beaber home.  Today, we were treated with a home made breakfast. 


Tate has been showing interest in working in the kitchen. 

Of course we want to encourage this. 

So today, he wanted to make breakfast all by himself.

The parents stayed out of the kitchen while he was measuring ingredients and mixing up the batter.  He did have the help of the brotherhood watching over his shoulder.

We heard a couple of random, slightly concerning comments coming from the kitchen, such as:

"Oops, that was a little too much. Oh well, it's o.k. if you have a little too much."

After mixing, he needed some parental intervention.  We had him make the recipe for 1 1/2 batches. So he had to do a little math as he went. When he was done, they were a little thick. Turns out he forgot to add the extra milk. And he may have added too much baking powder. We know he added too much of something.

Our pancakes are not usually this fluffy.

He not only learned about mixing and cooking, but about flipping. In all fairness, his dad poured the batter onto the griddle into huge pancakes.  Bigger pancakes than he ever makes when he's cooking breakfast.  So, there was a flipping error that resulted.

Whoops! Don't worry, it's all good!

Here he is, measuring out his own pancakes. 

Substantially smaller pancakes than his dads.

Here is the finished project!  Mmmm. All in all, a delicious and wholesome breakfast, cooked by my oldest son. Plus, it had the added benefit of being a great learning experience. Everything makes a great learning experience when you are a home schooler. Just this morning he tackled math, physics, and other science concepts. Not to mention reading comprehension and following directions.  

I bet the next time he makes breakfast, they will taste even better!

Now, when is he going to start making supper?

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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Better Than it Was


So, this blog design isn't what I had envisioned.  And for some reason on my computer the title is not in the font I chose, but at least it's not all wonky. So for now, until I become more computer capable, this will have to do. (that could be a long time, just warning you)

I hope you don't mind.

For today, all I have for you is a picture of this kid:
Here is a little comparison for you.
See how much he's grown!

Seth 7 years

Seth 7 Months

 He's so cute. Look at that grin. Ha! I love his smile in both of the photo's but the top photo really makes me smile. I love this stage in his boyhood. All arms and knobby knees and crooked teeth that are different sizes. He still has some of the sweetness of his babyhood and he still acts like my little boy, but there is evidence of the young man on his way.

He is going to be one handsome guy.

After braces of course.

I'll probably have to beat the girls off with a stick. (They seem so aggressive now a days, no more waiting on the boys to call them or ask them out.  They just jump right in there and take the bull by the horns so to speak, at least from what I've heard from some of my friends. I know not all girls are like that. Thankfully.)

Here's our first spring flower. It didn't have to try and push it's way through the snow this year. We've been having some unusually warm temps. This week, it finally feels a little more like spring than an early summer. I just wasn't ready for 70's. You can argue with me if you'd like.

Annie isn't complaining about the snow being gone. She loves this time of year. She can sit outside most of the day and watch over her little kingdom.

That's all for now, enjoy your evening. Pin It

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Patience Please - Blog in Progress

Please, please, please have some patience with me as I get this blog figured out.

I spent a lot of time today trying to 'improve' the look of the blog.

Get a nice header, some cool background.

A lot of time.

And this is what I get.

I know it is not good design.

I know it is wonky.

All I wanted was to make things a little more pleasing to the eye and easier to read.

Obviously, that was not accomplished.

So - until I can figure it out, hang in there please.

I just cannot deal with it anymore today. I already had to shut down my dinosaur of a computer 3 times, and blogger decided to change their look and that made it difficult to know where to find everything. Plus, they just don't seem to have the capability to do what I want to do, which is center that header! So . . .

Let's just work with wonky for right now, shall we?

Honestly, it's probably a little more accurate.
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Spring + Boys + Mud = FUN!

Is there anything a boy likes better than a good mud hole?

Not much, except for maybe an ATV to ride through the mud hole.

Of course, getting stuck in the mud hole would be a pretty fun thing to do.

(Even though he was told to steer around the deepest part of the mud hole.  It just magically sucked him right in. Hmmm, I wonder how that happened?)

Fortunately, there was a Poppa who came to the rescue.

Getting covered in a little mud is all  just part of the fun.  No worries mom, I didn't mean to get my new pair of pants all muddy!

It seems like knowing the difference between play clothes and good clothes and church clothes is a little bit of a challenge to comprehend.

(I have made a very important discovery. If you spray the muddy clothes and put them in the wash right away, while the mud is still relatively fresh, and you wash in hot water, you can actually get most of the mud out. If you wait until the next day, you are sunk. You just invented a new type of dye for your kids clothes. That mud will never come out.)

There he goes, off to ride some more and get stuck again. (He only got stuck twice that day). Can you blame him? That mud hole really does look irresistible.

Seth had a better time maneuvering the dirt bike around the mud hole, or maybe just a healthier fear of getting stuck ankle deep in the gooey wetness.

Stay tuned - there may be some pictures of this kid racing this bike this summer. He thinks he wants to give it a try.

Goodbye Mud hole -

Hello bath tub.

See all that residual dirt. That is what was left over from only one little boy.

Summer is coming.

And we plan on enjoying it. Pin It

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Real Life of a House Wife:

My parents did me the great favor of taking all of my boys to their house for a few days.

Now you all know I love my boys.

I love home schooling them.(most of the time)

I love being with them. (most of the time)

But there is one thing that has been hard to get since becoming a mama.


Alone time.

Peace- and-quiet.

Especially in my own house.

So when my parents said they would take the kids for a few days, I started to feel giddy! I almost started laughing hysterically before they all left.(don't worry, I kept it in until they were gone) I could hardly contain my excitement. To be home, alone. Oh bliss!

All of my options started lining up and marching through my brain. I started to feel dizzy as the options kept swirling and twirling and teasing me with their amazingness. Oh what things I could do without having to worry about my little people. Or make meals for them. Or settle a sibling squabble. Or do school with them.

How could I maximize this quiet time gift that I had been given?

It was all too much so I left the house.

I went for a horse back ride.

Then I hijacked my husband and we went for an overnight stay at a very nice home that belongs to some people my brother-in-law knows.(of course I forgot the camera on the counter at home and I don't know how to get photo's off my phone onto the computer because I don't have one of those fancy smart phones)

I came home to silence. So I read a book, took a nap, went for a brisk walk (where I didn't have to stop even once) and made dinner for company.

Then this morning I had the privilege of waking up to an empty house. My hubby gets up early on Wednesdays to go to his men's Bible study.

 I can't remember the last time I woke up all alone in my own house.

The weather was so nice, that I decided to move the furniture out onto the porch and fully absorb the beauty around me while doing my quiet time.

That's peace and quiet right there people.

So very, very, nice. No interruptions.

Just me, my Bible and God's beauty right in front of me.

Oh, and the dog.

Now if I could just get my sister to quit calling me! Sheesh! :)

Do you see that look of peace and contentment in my eyes? That look of wonder and amazement?

Ahhhhh . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I know one day, all I will have is alone time. The kids will be grown, and I'll still be here. And when that happens, I'll be sad. I'll miss them. I'll miss the noise and chaos and mess.

But not today!  I've got 8 hours of solitude left.

I am going to relish every second!

Let's keep it real people. You know you're just wishing someone would come take your kids for a day or two. Maybe even just an hour.

So, I'm off. I just realized I forgot to eat today. Whoops.

Plus, I better get to my cleaning. (Not very glorious I know, but this way it will actually stay clean for a little while. Until I bring the boys home on Friday) Besides, this alone time wasn't preplanned so I wasn't able to gather the materials for a project. And my sewing machine situation still isn't quite fixed, although I'm getting there. So really, what's left? Cleaning. But I think I'll at least blast some music and turn it into worship time. Besides, I can't remember the last time I mopped the floors, so it really does need it.

And there you have it: this is the real life of a house wife. Pin It

Monday, March 19, 2012

Signs of Spring

This is a sure sign that spring is here at the Beaber house:

These boots are a necessity not a luxury when you live in the country.
And when you have three boys.
This picture makes me smile.
Boys. Pin It

St. Patricks Day Parade!

Who knew? Pickerel hosts a St. Patricks Day parade every year. In fact this year was the 23rd. We've lived in Lily, 5 mile from Pickerel for 3 years, and somehow, we never knew about this phenomenon. And let me tell you, it was pretty fantastic. It met all the northwoods celebration requirements.

We drove up to Pickerel 10 minutes before the parade was to start. We didn't think we'd have much of a problem getting a parking spot. I mean the population of Pickerel and Lily together is probably less than 1500 people. But we were wrong. I don't know if it was the fabulous weather, or the fact that after a long winter people just want to party, but the streets were packed! The other thing we were wrong about was our wardrobe. I mean, I know that when you dress up for St. Paddy's day you are supposed to wear green, so most of us had our token green on. But these people went all-out! I mean over the top all-out, like freakishly wierd all-out. Even the animals were dragged into it.

Here's a small glimps of the crowd. There were almost as many people here for this little parade as there is for the 4th of July celebration in White Lake. I'm pretty sure that there were more people here this year than most years. I cannot remember having 70 degree temps in any of the previous years. 
What are two things that a North woods celebration can't do without?
 Wierdo's and alcohol.
Both are usually found in abundance, and today was no exception.
(notice the large green mohawk in the background?)

This leprchaun, was walking around the parade. If you answered his question of "Are you Irish?" with a' yes', he poured hard liquor down your throat. I personally have never encountered this at a parade before. Fortunately he wasn't approaching any under age kids.

Of course, what parade would be complete without a beer wagon? Yes, here in the Northwoods, they pass out cups of beer to adults during the parade. I don't support this - just in case you were wondering. I guess it is part of the North woods charm?

Of course a St. Patricks Day parade wouldn't be complete without a visit from the Saint himself, and we were not disapointed. The fact that a woman was wearing this costume did not go unnoticed by us. Even the kids knew. Guess she should have either remained silent, or disguised her voice better. :)

All Northw woods quirks aside, we still enjoyed ourselves.  The kids left with a pocketfull of candy, which is all they really cared about.  The adults just enjoyed the sun shining on our faces and watching all of the people at the parade.

So I'm wondering . . . do any of you have parades like this in your home town? I want to know what your town holiday celebrations are like. This is a small glimps of some of ours. Over all, it's always a fun experience. The people are usually friendly and because we live in a small community, we usually recognize many of the faces in the crowds. We usually don't have any safety issues, people help watch out for each other.
I hope you enjoyed your St. Patricks Day. Pinterest filled my head with all sorts of fun and colorful ideas, but as usual, I didn't get around to doing any of them.
So at least we had the parade.
It was a good day. Pin It

Friday, March 16, 2012

Silly Bands, Sily Boy

Seth started his silly bands collection last summer. He has not taken them off for anything. They've been on his wrist through sun and rain, swimming and baths, sweaty soccer games, beach days, snow days, and all the days in between. He had quite the collection. 39 to be exact. I'm pretty sure at some point in time he had over 40 but he's given a few away and a couple have broken. Well, looking at his wrist last night, his father and I decided it was time to remove a few bracelets. I mean really, did they need to stay on indefinitely? We didn't want the silly bracelets to become a part of his identity or something.
Here's the before:

And here is the after:

Notice the funky brown spots on his wrist? That's dirt. Or mold. I'm not sure which. We did let him keep his Threads of Hope bracelets on since they would have needed to be cut off and we didn't want to make him ruin them.

He said his arm feels lighter now. It's kinda weird looking at his wrist and not seeing it covered in 4 inches of plastic. I wonder why he decided to amass as many silly bands as possible and wear them for so long? Who knows why boys do the things they do. Definitely not me, their mom. I just shake my head and smile.

Then we've got this kid -
He has decided that it is his duty to rid the yard and bird feeder of squirrels.

Don't call PETA! We live in the north woods OK? This is what boys do, or so I've been told by my north woods born and raised hubby. Tate's odds at hitting his target have greatly improved since he has been allowed to use the little shot gun. When he was restricted to the b.b. gun, well, let's just say the squirrels were not afraid.
 Sorry, no updated pictures of the third little Beaber. I didn't have my camera yesterday when he filled his new rain boots up with water because he stepped in a puddle that was just a bit too deep. He actually poured water out of his boot when he got back on dry ground. :)
Enjoy your weekend! Enjoy your kids! If they are anything like mine, there is never a dull moment. Pin It

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Bulliten Board Makeover

Many years ago, when I was a young girl, full of ideas and dreams of grand adventures, I lived in . . . .
my parents basement.
Yes, after my two year college stint, I came back home to live with my parents, until my Prince Charming whisked me off my feet and carried me away to far away lands.
Anyway, during that time, I started crafting. I was a big Martha fan back then and from one of her magazines I learned to make this fabric covered bulletin board.

Even all those years ago, I was a big thrift store fan. What can I say,  I learned it from my Mama.  I found this frame, and the fabric at the St. Vincent Thrift Store and bought the bulletin board at Menards (where I happened to have a part time job at the time). Please remember, back then, country and lodge decor were pretty cool and forest green was the color to decorate with.
This bulletin board has served me well through the early years of my marriage, matching nicely with my forest green couches and moose plates. However, just as fashions have changed over the years, so have my decorating tastes - thank goodness! Consequently, I have been wanting to redo this bulletin board for a long time, but I have just continued to use it as is, because it was still functional and was hidden from sight in my laundry room. However, with the redo of the laundry room paint, the colors on this bulletin board wouldn't do anymore. After looking and looking, I finally found a fabric that I liked (and that I could afford). 
A little spray paint, some new fabric, and I have a transformed, much more contemporary and fashionable bulletin board that matches my laundry room.

Oh so much better! I am really in love with grey and white right now! And yes, I like spelling grey with an e instead of an a. It's just the way I roll. (I always thought that Grey could make a cute name for a little girl, but I never got to try it out)
Here it is in the laundry room. I have really bad lighting in my laundry room, that I am hoping to replace, but until then, you'll have to tolerate the pictures being a little off color from the lack of good lighting.

It's hard to tell, but I painted 3 walls in my laundry room a dark pink. I took a risk putting such a bold color in such a small room. I really love the shade of pink I chose, it's kind of like a raspberry pink, but I'm not sure I love the end result in here. Part of the reason, I'm sure, is the lighting issue I have. The other part is because of the fact that I have not been able to complete decorating the room the way I want. But the other part comes down to the fact that I should have gone with a lighter color because the 'look' I really love, in all the pictures in all the magazines I look at have that light, airy cottage feel to them. Not hot pink. What can I say? I was feeling daring at the time. I even thought about it for weeks, put up paint chips, eliminated the wrong colors, vacillated between orange or pink.
Sometimes, no matter how much you think and plan, you just don't love the end result like you thought you would.

Here's my other problem. Do you see this mess? (I can't believe I'm actually putting this picture up for the whole internet world to see! Eeeek!) How in the world am I supposed to organize this? It's a dumping ground! It always looks like a disaster, and I am the worst at putting stuff on the shelf because I don't have anywhere else to put it. This is where we keep our shoes and coats, so it's our mudroom/laundry room. And in my opinion it's way too small for all the things it's supposed to do, but the size isn't changing so I need to find the best way to make it function. Any suggestions? Only cheap suggestions please.
I also need to get rid of that ribbon bulletin board. The cream fabric really doesn't look very good in here now.  Unless - maybe I could recover it? Do you think there is a tutorial for that online?
Hmmmm. Maybe that will be my next project. Pin It

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Babies Babies Everywhere . . .

Sunday I had a double baby shower to attend. It was for the pastors wife of the church we go to and another new mom whom I've know for many years now. I've actually known both of these young mommas since before they were married. Before they really ever thought they'd be mommas. So it is really fun for me to see them now, pregnant bellies, newborn babes and all.
Of course I had to make some handmade gifts for them. All was going well until I procrastinated and waited until the day before the shower to do my sewing. And then my sewing machine died. I mean ka-poot! Hunky Hubby couldn't even fix it. Crisis! Fortunately a friend who lives close by let me borrow hers even though she was out of town. Yay! Crisis averted.
 I like to make burp cloths out of cloth diapers and I also like to make hooded towels. I like to give the towels big enough hoods for the kids to still be able to use them when they are older. My boys still love to use their hooded towels.

These were for the pastors wife, she knows she's expecting a boy. I actually made 4 burp cloths but I didn't get a picture with all of them. You can see a peek of the towel underneath. I always like to add some ribbon to the edge of the hood for a little pizzaz.

These are the burp cloths I made for the other young momma. She gave birth to a beautiful little girl a little bit ago. I think this fabric could go either way, boy or girl. I don't look for fabric that reflects the baby's gender as much as I just want something cute for the momma to haul around. I mean really, baby doesn't care what she/he upchucks onto. All the cuteness is for the mom.

Wyat agreed to be my model when I was making this towel. Seth refused. Wouldn't let the pink towel touch him. Wyat's secure enough in his masculinity though. :) I love these towels! I was given one when I had Seth and they are much nicer than the ones marketed for babies, in my opinion. They last for years and are nice and thick. Some of those other baby towels are so thin that they get soaked through immediately. That was my experience at least.
I also had to bring some food to the shower, so I thought I'd add a picture of the trifle we made, it turned out so beautifully. I couldn't have done it without Hunky Hubby and Megan's help. It was a three man effort, but oh so good. Nothing tastes better than strawberries, chocolate and cool whip together, mmmmm. And don't think I put all the effort into prettying up the top like that. No siree, that was all Hunky Hubby's doing. Isn't he grand? I think so.

I also made an oriental salad. No pictures though. I had some requests for the recipe so I'm going to add it here for those who were interested (Mary).

Oriental Coleslaw Salad
1 pkg shredded coleslaw mix (16 oz)
2 pkgs oriental Ramen Noodles - crushed
1/2 C. - slivered almonds
1/2 C. salted sunflower seeds
lightly toast the nuts and seeds
1/2 C.- olive oil   -    1/3 C. - apple cider vinegar
1/2 C. - sugar        2 seasoning packets from Ramen noodles

Mix dressing, set aside until right before you serve the salad
Add all ingredients together immediately before serving to preserve the crunch.

Well, that's all I've got for today. What is your favorite gift to give at a baby shower? Or what did you receive that you found you couldn't have lived without? These were two items I loved and used regularly with my babies. Their burp cloths weren't as cute, although I did dye them green, but they were just as functional. Pin It