Thursday, December 23, 2010

{Multiple Choice Christmas}


a. Family
b. Friend(s)

We are approaching the end of 2010 and are thankful for the wonderful blessings we've received this past year. We wish for you a wonderful holiday season filled with love, laughter and great memories!

The Holmes family

a. successfully sold their home
b. are currently living with family
c. are anxiously awaiting news to the exact location in AZ that they'll be planting roots

For the most part, Damon is healthy and

a. was lucky enough to have the whole entire summer off from work
b. still has 10 working fingers after a battle with a table saw and two successful surgeries
c. had an enjoyable year full of kayaking, camping, rock climbing and hiking


a. finished another half-marathon and gave it her best running her first full marathon and is still running...
b. has enjoyed being a soccer mom and washing mud soaked attire
c. has discovered some fabulous BRAND NEW anti-aging products without the use of chemicals and is loving how they make her feel

Caleb is

a. enjoying first grade and has adjusted very nicely to a new school
b. into Ben 10, riding his scooter/bike, drawing, studying weather patterns and playing the piano
c. animated and loves to ask questions

Porter is

a. a HUGE Cars fan and is still mastering the art of going potty IN the potty
b. enjoying his big brother, learning his letters and sounds, WRESTLING and having tea parties with dinosaurs
c. courteous and polite, a snuggler and loves to be read to

Looking ahead to 2011, we wish you

a. the happiest of holidays
b. a healthy and prosperous New Year

Merry Christmas!


Friday, December 10, 2010

{It's A Bake-a-thon... Not!}

It's tradition. Every year my sisters, mom and I get together and do a little bit of Christmas baking. We each bring a recipe or two, bake all day long and then divvy out the greatness allowing us to come home with a variety of goodies to pass along to our friends and neighbors.

This year we opted to bag out of the cookie baking and decided to make the masses of two different kinds of treats... just to change things up a bit.

Divine Goodie Number Uno: Carmel, Chocolate Dipped Pretzel Rods

These look really pretty (place them in a clear cellophane bag and tie w/ ribbon) and there's an endless way to decorate the suckers. If you haven't tried them, it's a must. If you can believe it they taste even BETTER then they look!

A bag of Kraft Caramels
Bag of pretzel rods
A few bags of chocolate (white, milk, dark, whatever kind you'd like to do). Choose several kinds to mix and match. I used Wilton and purchased it from JoAnn Fabrics.


1. Melt caramel using the double boil method.
2. While caramel is melting, layer cookie sheets with parchment paper.
3. Once caramel is melted, dip your pretzel rod into the caramel to desired length. Your pan may not be exceptionally deep. I used a spoon to help me coat the pretzels.
4. Allow the excess caramel to drip back into your pan before placing on the parchment lined cookie sheet. Repeat for all pretzels and allow caramel to harden.
5. Melt your chocolate that you want to use as a base. Dip your caramel pretzels into the chocolate to cover the caramel. Again you may need to use a spoon to get the coverage you want.
(Don't be afraid if your pretzel rods aren't looking pretty yet.. the drizzle will hide any non smooth areas.)
6. Allow your chocolate to harden on the pretzels. Putting them in a freezer is also a great option to hurry the process along.
7. Melt another kind of chocolate for the drizzle and decorating. I opted to use a disposable icing bag to help me drizzle, but you could also you a spoon to do the same process.
8. Allow to harden completely before placing them in cellophane bags.

Divine Goodie Number Dos: Rolo Turtles
(Thanks to my sis for introducing me to these!)

Even easier than the 1st recipe... these things take only minutes to make and require only three ingredients. These also look wonderful wrapped in cellophane bags w/ ribbon.


Bag of small pretzels (traditional shape)
Bag of Rolos
Bag of Pecans

Directions: (if you can call it that!) :)

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Lay out your pretzels on a cookie sheet lined w/ parchment paper.
3. Place one rolo in the middle of each pretzel.
4. Cook for 4 minutes.
5. Once out of the oven, immediately place a pecan down to flatten the rolo into the pretzel.

Set aside to cool or place in freezer for 5 minutes to cool quickly.

Happy flour free baking!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Geritol Beauty Clinic

NY Stock Exchange eat your heart out. Purchasing fun bath toys has more then tripled our investment in the Holmes household. My kids can play for hours in a bath (okay not really, but yes, close). I love to hear them squeal and play and I also love that I'm able to get few things done without children under foot.

Most of you know that we are temporarily staying at my parents home until our move down south. This morning I announced to Porter that it was bath time. YES!, was his response. After what seemed like 3,500 seconds, I coerced then bribed then dragged got him out of the tub... the water was not even a desirable bath temperature and he was still happy as a clam.

I began drying him with a towel when all of a sudden he looked at his hands. Excited, he shouted "Mom! I've got wrinkles... just like grandma!"

Could everyday be bath day!?


Tuesday, November 23, 2010


School has been canceled for the past few days due to our abnormal icy weather.

Look how sad they are?

Monday, November 22, 2010

{We've Advanced}

from Rainville to Snowburg with cooler arctic temperatures to accompaniment it.

So with all of this frigidness I thought I'd make something warm and comforting.. Golden Potato Soup (an amazing and easy dinner that with all assurance will warm the cockles of my family's heart (and tummy).

Golden Potato Soup
(courtesy of

  • 3 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded American cheese
  • 1 cup chopped ham
  1. In a large stock pot add potatoes, celery, onion, chicken bouillon, water and parsley flakes. Season with salt and pepper and simmer until vegetables become tender.
  2. In a separate bowl mix flour and milk. Once it is well blended, add to soup mixture and cook until soup becomes thick.
  3. Stir in cheese, cooked ham or hamburger and simmer until cheese is melted.
I'm not going to include the nutritional information however, I will let you know that this recipe does make enough for five. :)


Saturday, November 6, 2010

{November Is A Time To Be Thankful}

You can follow beautiful Stephanie here:
Thank you for inspiring me.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

{It's Fall 'Yall}

If you live in the PNW you're aware that our summer weather (ahem) lacked this year. (If you're not from Washington State...bite your tongue... we do actually get nice summers. :)

And although the weather has turned slightly chilly, the sun has been out in full force. (If you could hear me now I'd sing you the na na na na na I'm lov'n it jingle.) We took advantage of it and spent an afternoon at a pumpkin patch.

The pumpkin launch is a favorite activity at the patch and it goes something like this. You waste invest a bunch of money on tiny baby pumpkins with the hopes that one of those itty bitty things will be placed ever so perfectly inside some tubing and get launched graciously through the air with just the amount of velocity and speed to hit a bulls-eye 50+ yards away. If done correctly, your investment in small squash will get you a nice fat Grandad of them all pumpkin.. oh and your name goes on the wall of fame (uh, erased daily). A total man sport.

My husband with both luck and talent behind him has managed to do this for the last two years. But could he do it for a third? We wanted to find out. With an informal poll taken right before our arrival, the boys were split 50-50.

And raw talent it is. Bullseye. :)


Saturday, October 9, 2010


Caleb and I were casually strolling along the cereal aisle at the grocery store. I was focused on the cereal boxes and prices when I noticed how quiet it was all of a sudden. Normally during this time, the sugar cereal questions would have been firing off at machine gun speed...

"Mom. Mom. Mom. Can we get this one?"

I look over my shoulder to make sure Caleb is still with me when I see him eying a lady on the opposite side of the aisle. I quickly put a few boxes of cereal into our cart hoping to avoid the sugar cereal requests all together and begin walking. As we turn the corner into Center Aisle Mayhem Caleb turns to me with all seriousness and says:

"Mom, that lady had short boobies. (Looking at mine) You have long ones, good-job, Mom." And then gives my chest a sort of high five.

Mortified I am. For certainly, he couldn't have picked a more crowded part of the store to share his matter of fact conclusion.

Thanks for the rah rah, sweetheart. If you only knew... short boobies are in.


Thursday, September 30, 2010

This Week

I'm up to my neck in boxes and packing tape.
I'm on cruise control with a sharpie.
And I've become Craigslist's newest gazillionare. Alright so not really a gazillionare (but really not too shabby.) :)

$old my refabbed table and chairs I gave a leg lift to..

And started on some Christmas gifts.
All this pre-move prep (say that three times fast) made us hungry.. so we took a little bit of a time out to bake.

These babies have vanilla pudding mix in them! Wanna guess how many I ate?
Eh, too many.

Hope you have a fabulous weekend!


Sunday, September 26, 2010


How is it possible that the month of October is almost here?

I found tutorials for this cute DIY Halloween Wreath and Silver painted pumpkins at Remodelholic.

I love these black and white pumpkin toparies from Imperfectly Beautiful.

Printable Halloween potions and bottles labels from Fantasy Jr.

I'm loving how All Things Thrifty used paper and a Cricut machine to turn her staple mirror into a unique Halloween decoration.

And these Pumpkin Spice Brownie Bites from BruCrew. My stomach is growling just looking at them. :)


Thursday, September 23, 2010


Caleb and I had a dentist appointment this morning. After wards, I took Caleb to school, checked him into the office and then walked him down the hall to his class. I watched him go into his class then turned on my heel and started my walk back down the hallway when his teacher opened the classroom door chuckling.

"Mrs. Holmes", he said. "I want to tell you what Caleb just said."

Holding my breath I'm think okay give it to me..

The teacher said Caleb bounced into class and said, "Hi Mr.(teachers name), I'm late because I had a disappointment." (Dentist Appt.)

This afternoon I asked Porter if he needed to go pee-pee in the potty. He nodded his head. So up he went. He sat for a minute, played with the toilet paper roll, touched the flusher, swung his legs, looked up at the ceiling and then said, "Mom, my pee pee's broken, it's not working.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

{Cooking 101: Follow The Recipe}

For me the hard part isn't the cooking nor is it the following of directions. It's the "finding a great recipe" to begin with that can sometimes be difficult. Finding a great recipe means that the outcome is exquisite and that it doesn't call for 15 different ingredients (3 of which-you've never heard of before nor do you think you'llever use again (you know what I mean.)

No. I want easy. I want simple. And I want it to taste good. I have a handful of these recipes that fit the easy bill. Most of them have come from my dear friends. Because I'm lucky enough to have talented friends and when we have a get-together it usually always includes food.

I have another source for great recipes. You may have already discovered All but if you haven't, trust me- it's great. Why? Because recipes are submitted from every day people and receive star ratings once people have tried them. And I mean if 3,678 have tried a recipe and it gets a five star I think it's worth a trying. :)

I spotted this incredible recipe for meatloaf. Eww, meatloaf? Really? I know. I'm not a real meatloaf eater myself. In fact, meatloaf is not even in my regular dinner rotations. But this recipe fit my criteria for a great recipe so I gave it a go last night. It was such a hit I thought I'd share...

Brown Sugar Meatloaf

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup ketchup

1.5 lbs ground turkey (original recipe called for ground beef, but this healthy substitute tasted wonderful)
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1.5 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 tsp ground ginger
3/4 cup finely crushed saltine cracker crumbs

Preheat oven to 425. Lightly grease a 5 x 9 inch loaf pan. Mix the brown sugar and ketchup together in a bowl. Set aside. In a separate mixing bowl, mix thoroughly all remaining ingredients and shape into a loaf. Spread glaze on top of the meat loaf. Bake in preheated oven for 55 minutes.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Thou Shall Not Covet

I came across a blog and I started to drool. Okay so saliva was not actually dripping down my chin.. but my mouth did open. I'm in love with this blue piece of furniture. I believe it's an old dresser that they painted and turned into buffet.

Courtesy of

I love that they've taken an older piece of furniture transformed it into something unique and then placed it in a room that it was not originally designed for.

And it's kinda got me looking at furniture in a different way~


Thursday, September 16, 2010

{Die Hards}

We attend our local fair every year. It's tradition. It's been a tradition ever since I was little. And as our little family grows the tradition continues. In fact, it's talked about all year right up there with Christmas. The kids enjoy everything. The animals. The food. And the rides. Well... okay mostly the rides. Me? I love all of those things too. But, I'll personally add that the people watching is particularly awesome. :)

We elected to go yesterday. It was an early school release day. And the forecast was a little bit more promising than our upcoming weekend. So I picked up Caleb from school and we hit it- meeting up w/ Dad later after he got off of work. Except that the 30% chance of drizzle turned into 90% rain with 45% rain showers.

Check out my pant legs. That's not a shadow. We stayed until just after 9pm. That's all complete wetness from the shoes/socks on up. Partly from the rain but I contribute most of my wetness from my youngest- a puddle jumper. Check out his shmants (pants/shorts)...

Rain Shmain.. Kids could care less. :)