Monday, May 28, 2012

Calling all princesses...

We're polishing our crowns and practicing our poses...
Ellie's princess birthday is right around the corner. 
We can't wait!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

C is for Carrot Cake

Grandma Warkentin's  recipe 
(Pay no attention to my mother's recipe alterations...she's always cutting the best thing...sugar!)

It s official.  I have found THE carrot cake recipe of all carrot cake recipes.  I had to try making it twice just to make sure it wasn't a fluke.  No fluke...its that good.  I may have eaten it for breakfast and dessert yesterday.  And wished I had it for lunch as well. 

THE Carrot Cake
2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups oil
3 eggs
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup coconut
1 cup chopped nuts
1 8oz can crushed pineapple
2 cups grated carrots (about 7-8)

Combine ingredients in order given.  No need to sift flour.  Mix and blend well.  Pour into well greased and floured bundt pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.  Remove from oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before turning out of pan onto cake rack.  Frost when cool.  Refrigerate. (I love it cold!)

Cream Cheese Frosting
1 8oz package cream cheese (softened)
1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened)
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Cream butter and cream cheese.  Add powdered sugar and vanilla.  Mix until smooth and creamy.  Apply generously.

Friday, May 25, 2012


My biggest little girl finished first grade yesterday.  She continues to amaze us with her hardworking, perfectionistic ways.  Straight A+s on her report card...  100% every single week on her spelling tests... 9 certificates including history, science, spelling, math, Christian leadership and best all around girl student...  2 medals...She simply couldn't have done better.  And we are so proud of her.

 Brett got the privilege of baptizing Brooklyn

But the thing that makes us even prouder than her academic successes is her heart for Jesus.  Many mornings I'll wake up to her reading her Bible with a little light while everyone else is still asleep.  She has memorized tons of scripture and knows more about the Bible than many adults do.  And on her last day of first grade, she decided to show her love for Jesus and her commitment to live a life completely for Him by getting baptized.  A big step for a little girl who loves a big God with her little heart.  

Monday, May 21, 2012

Wet and Wild Mall?

We have an incredibly nice mall minutes from our house.  You may find me in H&M or Anthopologie drooling every so often.  And the kids love the toy store, the ice cream shop, and Build a Bear (more drooling).  Anyway, one really strange feature of this mall is the water fountains.  You know the ones that sporadically shoot water in the air from underground spouts..  Sometimes just an inch of water and other times 4 feet of the wet stuff.  Not sure what the mall planners had in mind though.  No shopping is done with sopping wet children in tow.  And no shopping is done when all they can think about is getting to those fountains.  But the place is always hopping and very popular with the kiddos.  We have gone for fountain entertainment alone before.  The girls wore their suits and we brought towels, sunscreen, snacks, the whole bit. This week however, the only plan was the library.  The fountains were an afterthought.  We were just going to "watch".  There is no "watch" for kids when it comes to water.

Ellie and Leighton completely soaked themselves and loved every minute of it.  
So much that I had to drag Leighton away screaming, wet, and with no towel.

Brooklyn however, preferred a shady spot to read and didn't even bother getting near the water.  
She had her own kind of fun.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Li-berry Books

 We just got a new library in our hood.  
And get this...its in the mall!  
Kids get restless shopping, head to the library for story time, then hit up Nestle for some snacks.  

The girls spent time puzzling...

sharing and sucking...(I've got to get that girl to stop with the thumb!  Ideas?)

 and reading like a lady.

And I managed to find some treasures of my own.  
Now if I can find the time to read them...
before they are due..
not that I'm the queen of overdue books or anything.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

muver's day

"Leighton, did you know tomorrow is Mother's Day?"
"Do you know what we do on Mother's Day?"
"Yes, eat candy."
"And who is your mother Leighton?"
"Aunt Amy is my muver"
Huh, better luck next year I guess.
 They spoiled me with this...  
and don't think the fact that it had been dropped on the floor kept me from enjoying it.

 I spoiled my own amazing mom (and the rest of the lucky fam) 
with the most insane carrot cake of all time.  Recipe to come...

Got to spend the afternoon painting this with the adorable girl who first made me a mommy.

 And three excited little girls surprised me with this.  
At least I looked surprised.  
(It was on  my list, my very short list, like one thing on my list type list.)

I am such a blessed mom, every day.

Friday, May 18, 2012

painting with mom

Brooklyn and I got to do something special, just the two of us, on Mother's Day.  A friend of mine launched a very creative company called Paint and Palate.  She sets up a professional artist to come and teach the group how to create a rendition of a well known masterpiece, while enjoying drinks and food form the venue. We took a Mother/daughter painting class, and recreated Van Gogh's famous sunflowers at Panera Bread.  Perfect or what?!?  Brooklyn could hardly sleep the night before and even turned down lunch to get going on her painting (I opted for the eat and paint option).  Let's just say she was beyond excited about it.  She created this incredible work of art pretty much on her own (I seemed to screw it up when I tried my hand at it...and she let me know it too!) She couldn't have been prouder.  And it made my Mother's Day just perfect.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Brooklyn hit the stage for her ballet recital this weekend.  I think I had a recital on a practically identical stage when I was about her age.  Just more proof that my cloning experiment is coming along quite nicely.  And no, that is not dirt on her cheek...she was the Pink Panther, and those are her eyeliner whiskers.  Please note:  Wet n Wild still exists.  And it is as cheap as it was when I bought my first tube of lipstick back in '87. Shimmering pale pink of course...smuggled in to school in the pocket of my acid washed jean jacket.  It was totally rad.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

I'm back...

I haven't fallen off the face of the earth...
just let blogging take a back burner to some other things for a season.  
Things like...

Visiting 2 of my college girlfriends and their adorable baby girls...
in pleasantly warm Arizona... 
kid free...
for and entire weekend.
Loved every minute.

 Spending time with my new personal trainer, Jillian Michaels...
we are now only 10 days away from being shredded...
she's made me big promises.

Taking a photog class with another friend...
realizing we could have probably taught the class ourselves...
ditching the "in the field" portion and spending some time in a field of our own, at IKEA.

 And mostly spending tons of time prepping and planning 
Teacher Appreciation Week at Brooklyn's school. 
and finally 
breathing when it was all over.