Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Happy Birthday Lisa!

Today is Lisa's Birthday.  She probably wasn't going to tell you. And since I don't have Facebook, I thought the perfect way to share would be to secretly hack into her blog and do do a post about it. The theme of todays post is, "A couple things you may not know about Lisa".  Without further ado:

She can run 10 miles without stopping.  In fact, she did this just last week. The boys thought it would be fun to run part of it with her. I came home from work to find three limping boys. No exaggerating. 

She makes beautiful babies. She may or may not appreciate me sharing this, but she refused medication throughout pregnancy, and labor, because she thought that is what would be the healthiest for our babies. I didn't realize it at the time, but this was to be a reoccurring theme throughout the rest of eternity (motherhood does last for eternity, doesn't it?). She ALWAYS puts the needs of her family before herself.  Twelve years after that first childbirth, I have never once witnessed her putting her own wishes in front of ours.  

She is artistic. If you have followed this blog for any length of time, you know this. Interestingly, she doesn't.  We recently had a date night at an art studio where we were asked to paint a picture together. Upon our arrival, the instructor asked Lisa if she was artistic. Without missing a beat, Lisa replied, "No". I was like, "Say what!?" See, even though you and I realize she is gifted and talented, self appreciation isn't something Lisa does.  She counts all of the beautiful things around her as blessings, never once considering that she is a blessing for so many others.

She gets bored easily.  You may have read about some very yummy food on this blog.  But, unless it explicitly says that the food is a tradition in our home, what you are seeing is something she whipped up on a whim, and in many cases invented from scratch.  She enjoys creating and is absolutely incredible at it. But, because she gets bored easily, she won't make that dish again.  Once it's been done, doing it again would lack the adventure that comes with the unknown. 

She inspires people. Wether it is in "real life" or via the www, Lisa touches many, many lives. I'm going to withhold sharing some of the amazing things she has done because that is the proper thing to do. But, believe me, she is an incredibly inspiring girl!

Lisa is the anti-woman. "I don't need another pair of shoes" is commonly heard at my house. I literally have to beg her to buy anything for herself.  Shoes, clothes, makeup, handbags, etc, etc, etc. If we are buying thing for Cameron, Kotah, Titus, or yours truly, she is 100% on board. But try to spend money on that girl and you are in for a fight. I recently talked her into buying a Vitamix. She returned it. Twice. I finally had to play the "it's for me, not for you" card to get her to keep it. 

I hope you smiles as you learned a little more about our birthday girl.  Please be sure to wish her a happy birthday! 

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Thursday, April 11, 2013

SCHOOL CLASSROOM birthday snacks: Classic Milk and M&M cookies (with birthday balls!)

Visits to the classroom...

Bringing birthday snacks to anxious and hungry lil tummies in their school classrooms:  that's my JOB!  I'm a Mama.  

Last month we had a loud but quiet birthday celebration for Titus' 9th birthday! You can see the details of his kick back turtle party here.  

His birthday was on a school day.  Who loves a chance to celebrate loved ones?  This girl. ;) I knew I wanted to make him feel EXTRA-ordinary even though he had a typical ordinary school day planned. 

Bringing surprise snacks to the classroom seems to be a *tried and true* way to make our littles feel loved. 
I wanted to keep is CLASSIC, so I bottled up some fresh, cold milk accompanied with M&M cookies.

Putting supplies together in a cute basket only takes 2 extra minutes but really amps up the festive and fun atmosphere.  I cuddled some bold blue napkins in the corner, dropped in a stack of mini milk cups, and filled the rest of the basket with bagged cookies.  Instead of towing in a gallon of milk, I used a glass bottle to create an extra-ordinary day. 

I had these adorable cookie bags leftover from when I used them on Dakotah's Olympic Training Birthday party.  I knew right away, as I was cleaning up from Dakotah's party last year, that I wanted to save the remaining bags for classroom treats because COOKIE spelled out in primary colors just FIT a school atmosphere.

The colors of M&Ms perfectly match the the colors of the font, so that was the obvious cookie choice. Pick your favorite mellow sugar cookie recipe, and mix in M&Ms.  Be sure to reserve some candy to stick on cookie balls right before baking so they turn out pretty.  

I also brought in a huge bag of birthday balls.  This is an excellent alternative to balloons!  You can find them in those giant tall cages at Wal Mart or Target.  Those cages of colorful, big, light balls were always so enticing to me growing up.  These balls are a multitude of colors, just like balloons, and you can buy them in the smaller sizes, just like balloons.  Helium is expensive lately, so buying the balls are only a tiny bit more than balloons PLUS they last a lot longer! 

I was excited to bring them in for the students!  I felt like Santa Claus. ;) 

 Okay! So, hands full with my bag of colored balls and a basket of cookies, I was ready to jump into the classroom and break up study time for a birthday celebration.

Somebody was happily surprised
on his special day.

Milk and cookie classic yummy-ness. 

Milk-dipped...of course.

I played a character-building games with the balls, instead of just passing them out.  We reviewed different character qualities like patience, self control, kindness, diligence, and faithfulness, and more!  Then,  I called a student to the front, and we worked together as a class to find a character trait that the student possessed.  They got a brand new bright ball afterwards and we continued on until all the birthday balls were gifted!

 It was a blessed way to spend 
the remainder of the school day 
for Titus' birthday.  

Moore Birthday DAY ideas:

To see how I hi-jacked Cameron's math class on his birthday with blueberry muffin cupcakes and a surprise visit from a science tutor, click here

To see easy 5 minute birthday traditions that take little time but leave a big memory, click here

This post is linked to: Under the Table & DreaminNifty Thrifty,  Made by You MondayMet Monday, Tuesday Tutorials and TipsHOMEWORK: Be InspiredTip JunkieGet Your Craft OnWorks for Me WednesdayOrganize and Decorate EverythingTransformation ThursdayTablescape ThursdayStrut Your Stuff36th AveFoodie FridayI'm Lovin ItTickled PinkFriday FlairBe Different Act NormalFunky Junk Interiors, Weekend Wrap Up, Six Sisters Saturday 

Friday, April 5, 2013

Pushing the doors open to FRESH SPRING: our Easter Sunday dinner and celebration 2013

The promises of the Easter season are full and spill over with fresh reminders of hope and newness.  The fresh spring that awakens the world, celebrates with a colorful chorus of greens and pastel flowers. We push our doors open to the outdoors to search for colored eggs and to enjoy picnics of cold salads and ham.  Finally, the moment that we've all held our breath for is here: new sunshine gifted in a fresh new season, SWEET SPRING.

And we celebrate the empty cross that made our spirits full.  You can read our Easter story of REDEMPTION here.

our spring mantel 2013

By tradition, along with everyone else, the kids happily colored eggs the day before Easter Sunday.  Color-spotted paper towels sprawling across the counter, stained fingertips,  the strong smell of vinegar tickling our noses, and the sound of silver spoons clanging as eggs were lowered in and lifted out of egg dye.

...Oh! What a beautiful mess

Our family Easter tradition is to leave our EMPTY Easter baskets outside the night before Easter for the bunny to see and to FILL!  The boys race outside once it's dark and line up the baskets on the doorstep.  They leave the colored eggs out for the Easter Bunny to hide as well.

And of course each boy always leaves a carrot because
 the Easter Bunny probably misses his giant dreamy garden
 as he is busy out visiting homes.

Waiting in anticipation for the Easter Bunny to fill their baskets *bright and early* the next morning!

Early in the morning, the boys always hear a startling LOUD knock on the front door and they stumble downstairs and open the door to discover that the Easter Bunny has filled their baskets, and wrapped them up in cellophane as a festive surprise! The boys grab their baskets, peek around for signs of Easter bunny ears, but usually only spot a trail of leftover carrots that the Bunny left behind.

This year, along with their fun-wrapped baskets, the boys found giant foam airplanes to fly in the spring skies too!  

Last year, the Easter bunny left gorgeous pocket kites to fly.  See here for details.  Outdoor toys that work in the wind are perfect for spring.

Chris recently started a new tradition for the boys.  I know a lot of other families do this one too!  Chris' family did this when he was growing up and he is passing it down for his boys: The Giant Jelly Bean Search.  At night, he hides millions of jelly beans around the living room, leaving a colorfully dotted room for the boys to wake up to! 

Who else practices this tradition? It's a new one for me and I love that it is something Chris does special for our boys.  He puts them in such creative spots too...

This year, we celebrated Easter Sunday dinner at our home sweet home with my parents and brother.  I got to tie on my flirty apron and do some cooking!

The heart of the home is cooking.

Our Easter Menu 2013

Pork Tenderloin
Homemade Creamed Corn
Balsamic Roasted Asparagus
Strawberry Spinach Salad
Traditional Potatoes Au Gratin
Leek & Gruyere Cheese Potato Bake
Homemade dinner rolls (yummmm!)
Green Grape Salad
Bacon Cheddar Deviled Eggs
Veggie Tray assortment
Cheese and Cracker Tray
Mint Pie and Chocolate Cream Pie (compliments of my mom)

My mom is an incredible pie maker! Thank you Mom. <3 p="">

Deviled Eggs of course

Lots of snacks while hungry lil tummies wait for the big

For some reason, hard boiled eggs taste so much better on Easter!  
I like to have them out and ready to grab on our holiday funday.


I thought it would be a SUPER idea to use snow cone holders for Easter eggs! 
I've also used these snow cone holders here:
and for fruit cones

More snacks nestled in my favorite Rosanna dishes:
nuts, oranges, and cream filled chocolates.

I'm such a fan of all the lightened and brightened soft colors of springtime. 

This is a bunny I painted when I was a little girl and it matches a painting that Chris and I just painted recently in the background too. :) 

The kids discovered and explored more Easter goodies from my parents as we prepared dinner.  Titus with all of his new finger puppets.  Titus puts on the BEST puppet shows.  ever.

For the table this year, I added in bursts of hot pink.

Each place setting had a different colored napkin and a little jelly bean filled Easter basket.

For the centerpiece I made a hot pink feather nest with a glass hot pink bunny in the center.

a time to gather

Past Easter POSTS:

My brother, my parents, and our team 5!

Blessings to each and every one of you during this season
of course,