Friday, December 31, 2010

New Years Resolutions and other Nonsense

      In the year 2010 my New Years resolution was to lose 30 pounds, now mind you, that I have had the same New Years resolution for the last 10 years, and never ever came close to meeting this goal.  In fact, I may have, in past years, gained 30 pounds.  I would, in fact, blame this tragedy/ weight gain on my pursuit in the field of ministry.   I firmly believe somewhere in a random ministry handbook there is a section with a clause on weight gain, and to be in ministry you must put on at least 30 pounds your first year of ministry, or you have not properly shepherded your people and met the required daily Starbucks quota's.  Now some would disagree with me, but I have knowledge of this secret weight gain society. 

    Photo evidence.
 This picture was taken approximately two years after going into full time Children's Ministry.
      Okay, I may be stretching the truth a smidge, but only a smidge.  This year I actually completed my New Years resolution, it's a Christmas miracle, and lost 31 pounds.  Yippee!  I also learned an interesting fact-  if you increase your calorie intake by 300 calories a day you will put on approximately 30 pounds in a year.  Wowzers!   

This Christmas season.

   Alright, enough, out with 2010 and in with 2011.  This year I decided to up the stakes on resolutions and add a few more.  Here's the 2011 lineup:

Walk with God-   To be in the Word daily, to be praying for my family daily,  and to complete at least one women's bible study this year.

 Hubby-  To go on a date with my honey at least once a month.  To take a trip for   our 15th anniversary.  (Sandy, if your reading- hint, hint.)  :)

Weight loss-  To lose 20 more pounds and leave the other ladies who are joining the Biggest Loser challenge in the dust.  :)

   That's it for me folks! 

Blessings to you and yours!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

It's a Snowman Party!

The weatherman was finally right, and we got loads and loads of snow!

      On account of our recent accumulation of snow I decided to have a snowman party with the cousins.  We started with lunch complete with snowman ham and cheese sandwiches!   Quick and easy was my theme for the day, well, in addition to the snowman theme. 

      Then the kids designed their own hot cocoa mugs.  I found these mugs at Micheal's for $.60 each-  they were 70% off!  Gotta love after Christmas deals.

         Then we headed outside to burn a little energy and have some fun in the snow.

      After an hour of romping in the snow hot cocoa is a must!  The kids enjoyed their hot chocolate and created donut hole snowmen for a yummy treat.  I got the donut hole snowman idea from

   To make donut hole snowmen you'll need:  one box of donut holes, one box of mini donuts, toothpicks,  one tube of black and one tube of orange decorating gel or frosting.  To make snowmen:  place mini donut on a plate, skewer one donut hole and attach to mini donut, add another donut hole for head and decorate! 

   The day was a blast, and even the big boys like decorating their snowman snack, though Christian informed me that the older kids wanted regular sandwiches not snowmen.  :)  This simple party was easy and super cheap to throw together.   I already had the sandwich supplies and spent about $10.00 on the supplies for the donut hole snowmen and crafts.  A wonderful fun day had by all!

Blessings to you and yours! 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Homemade Potato Soup

   I love the winter season.  Our local news station keeps assuring me we will have snow this week, though I have yet to see any.  The snow I had in my backyard has melted, and my grass is green.  Not really sure how the grass is green, yet it is.  Anyways, thick fluffy snow, cool temperatures and Christmas decorations make me crave yummy, thick, and hearty soup.

Baked Potato Soup with Ham

   My favorite soup is Baked Potato, and over the last few years I have perfected my recipe.  In all honesty, I modified a older recipe I had, and created something catered to my families' taste.

Baked Potato Soup 

                                  5-6 baked potatoes cubed     1 tsp. of minced garlic          
                                  3 cups of chicken broth          1 tsp. of basil
                                  3 cups of milk                        1 tsp. of salt
                                  2 Tbsp.'s of butter                  shredded cheese
                                  2 Tbsp.'s of flour                    sour cream
                                  6 strips of bacon or ham

Combine chicken broth, 2 cups of milk, butter, garlic, basil and salt.  Heat over medium heat.  Mix flour and remaining cup of milk and add to broth.  (Tip: I put the flour and milk in a container with a lid and shake.  This helps the flour to fully dissolve into the milk.  This tip works for making gravy, as well.)  Add already cooked potatoes to mixture and let simmer 30 minutes.  Cook bacon and crumble, I do not add the bacon into the soup, instead I use it as a topper just before I serve this dish.  This method keeps the bacon nice and crisp.  After soup is heated dish into bowls, top with sour cream, cheese and bacon crumbles.  Enjoy!

Tip:  This is a great recipe to use with leftover Christmas ham instead of bacon. 

Blessings to you and yours! 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


   This year is rolling to a close, and frankly, I'm tired.  I often find myself trying to create the perfect environment for my family.  I want happy memories, fun times, joy and never pain, everyone to get along and never fight.  When my ideal world and life doesn't happen I find myself disgruntled, or worse, having a pity party. 

     This year I have learned a lot, and much of it has come through sorrow.  I have learned that my inter joy cannot be determined by circumstance,  I can spend all my effort and energy creating the "perfect" environment but "joy and sorrow" really do come like "ebb and flow".  I can control my own behavior and choices but I cannot dictate another's choice, and other people's choices can cause me sorrow. 

     What I've come to realize this year is that my walk with the Lord is all that matters.  If I have Him the winds may come and the rains may fall, but my foundation will not be shaken.  This year I chose to experience joy along with sorrow and the Lord grew me, He revealed that He has a plan for my life and though the journey maybe be difficult He will be my peace and joy. 

   This post is a little melancholy, but I am not.

 I am blessed with  a wonderful husband, 

 three beautiful kids, 

Photo credit Christina G. Photography

dear, slightly crazy friends,

 and a wonderful extended family.

  This week I am choosing to relax and spend time with the Lord.  I may (will) have slightly crazy OCD behavior, (tomorrow is snowman day)  and it's okay.  I pray your week is filled with more of Him.

Blessings to you and yours!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Recap

Photo from the Flat Belly Cookbook

     Remember these yummy delights?  Well, I did not eat them on Christmas morning, instead I went with the cinnamon rolls and breakfast casserole.  Utter failure, I know.  Oh well, the cinnamon rolls were delicious- I had two!

    The kiddo's woke us up promptly at 7:00 am to open presents. (Note: We do not EVER do presents before 7:00 am.) 

They look a little drowsy, but they would not let lack of sleep deter them, no, they would not.

      The kids were delighted with their loot and I was delighted with their generosity towards each other.  All of the kids used their own money to buy each other presents this year.  It blesses my heart to see how much they love each other.  (Note:  As a result of typing the previous sentence I have almost guaranteed that they will bicker, annoy, and irritate each other the rest of the night.)

  We had Sandy's side of the family over for Christmas dinner. 

The K family, minus Shaun.

 The ladies.

The men showing their "guns".

Fun with the cousins.

Christmas was a whirl wind of fun!  We are blessed beyond measure, and so grateful that we got to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior with friends and family! 

Blessings to you and yours!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Breakfast Idea's

      Morning ladies and gents.   Christmas is quickly approaching, and I thought I would post a few quick idea's for Christmas breakfast.  Now, you all know I love Christmas day.  I love celebrating the birth of our Lord and Savior, I love giving my kids special gifts, and creating delicious meals.  This year I want to spend more time with my family and less in the kitchen, so I am cheating a bit and making a semi-homemade breakfast for the crew.

   Sandy and the kids will be having Rhodes Cinnamon Rolls.  These babies are delicious and simple.  Before you go to bed on Christmas Eve pop these puppies in a greased 9x13 and cover with greased saran wrap.  Leave them on the counter overnight to thaw and rise.  When you wake up Christmas morning preheat your oven to 350 and toss the pan in the oven.  Let them bake while you open gifts!  You won't be disappointed.

   Sandy need a little protein for breakfast, and loves a breakfast casserole I found on All recipes. 

Click on this link for the full recipe  This is the best breakfast casserole I have ever consumed- the bottom layer is shredded potatoes instead of the usual bread cubes you find in traditional breakfast casserole.  I prepare this dish the night before I serve it and then pop it in the oven the next morning. 

Picture credit Allrecipes & William Rossbach

     Now both of these dishes are delightful and wonderful, but full of glorious calories.  Some of us don't need to worry about the calories we consume, though others of us need to watch what we eat.  Case in point:

Photo Pre October 2010

December 2010

  I will not be partaking in the consumption of Orange Rolls & Sausage Breakfast Casserole, no not me.  I will instead be using a recipe from:

      This cookbook is fantastic and I have lost a little over 30 pounds using their recipes.  For Christmas breakfast I will be making myself Chocolate Stuffed French Toast.  Yummm!

Photo from the Flat Belly Diet Family Cookbook

    This recipe is wonderful and only has 416 calories per serving.  I emailed and asked permission to post this amazing recipe, if I get approval I will post it asap.  In the mean time you can find it in the Flat Belly Diet Family Cookbook or google Flat Belly Diet Chocolate Stuffed French Toast. ( Side note- I really need to learn copyright laws.)


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Cakelets and other Christmas Goodies

Last week the FedEx guy brought us something besides light bulbs.  Woo hoo!

     A special aunt sent my kids this fun cakelet pan and gingerbread mix.  Doesn't cakelet just sound fun? Tonight the kids and I decided to break into the mix and bake some gingerbread man cakelets. 

During our baking extravaganza Grace told me I was, "divine, just divine".

Christian the egg cracker.

The finished product:

     Super fun and super easy!   A wonderful gift- the kids were excited and we got some fun family baking time in.  The gingerbread made my house smell wonderful and the kids said the gingerbread men tasted great!  You can get your own gingerbread cakelet pan  and gingerbread mix at


Christmas Treats and other Evil Calories

Yesterday I blogged about our recent Christmas trip to Grandma's. 

  Now I mentioned the wonderful food at Grandma H's, but not the food at Grandma K's.  At Grandma K's we had a plethora of wonderful desserts- homemade pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin pie, pecan pie, ice cream, whip cream, you name it, we had it.  Well ladies and gents I indulged.  Yummm!
   The indulgent desserts were all well and good, and I had visions of homemade fudge dancing in my head.  When what should I run across in the picture search:

Holy crap, batman!  Look at my cheeks!

     Here's a more recent photo of my and my beautiful sister.

     This summer I lost about 30 pounds and I am soo glad, however, I see myself in the mirror everyday and I forget the difference in how I looked and felt.  The holiday's come around and there is wonderful food everywhere I look and I think I'll have just one piece.  Well one piece of pumpkin and then just one piece of pecan.  Ridiculous, but true none the less.

    The good news is the chipmunk picture caught me up short- no walnut fudge for me!  I would rather have slow churned brownie fudge ice cream and one chin, thank you very much. 

Let's enjoy the fun of this holiday season and skip the calories!


P.S.  My poor husband suffered in the making of this blog.  He had to humor me and look at the difference in the pictures over and over again, while i muttered holy crap over and over again.  He's a stud and took one for the team.  And after all, I am sure he expects me to wear a swimming suit on his new monstrosity of a boat. 
I'll get a tetanus shot first!


Monday, December 20, 2010

To Grandmother's House We Go...

   Here's a quick recap of our family weekend.  I am sure all nine of my followers are dying of suspense.

This is the amazing view out my Grandma's K's living room window.

      This weekend we made our annual trek to my grandma's for Christmas.  We started out visiting my 93 year old grandma. 

      Grandma was going to order Papa Murphy's for lunch, but this is the feast she decided to throw together instead.

   She whipped up homemade scalloped potatoes and ham, fruit salad, coleslaw, fudge with walnuts (my favorite), divinity  (yuck), and peanut brittle.  She is amazing, she does water aerobics three times a week, and decided last week she should probably join a stretch class!  I hope I am in as good as shape as she is when I 'm 93. 
Next stop Grandma K's.
    The ladies- sister (Faith), Grandma, Mom, me, Noelle, & Grace

     After a busy day of traveling we settle in for a nice dinner with Grandma and Grandpa K, when Grace pops up and announces, "Christian thinks its a waste of time to visit you."  Greeeaat....  Isn't she cute.

     My grandparents are folks with a generous nature and completely ignore her comment.  I'm blessed with them-truly.

     The weekend festivities included gingerbread house building, and somehow I got stuck with the clean-up because mom and grandma had to wrap gifts.  Sure ladies, sure...I believe you.  I remember the days of my youth, Christmas was magical and there was no work involve, whatsoever.  Now I live in the days of creating the magic and fun, then cleaning up!  :)

Blessings to you and yours.