Saturday, October 30, 2010
Here is our finished products. Can you guess who's is who's?
Now it's time to enjoy the roasted pumpkin seeds!
Thursday, October 28, 2010
I've been pondering a lot about the woman I was when Greg and I married verses the woman I am today. I've changed so much in 5 years. Is it because of maturity with age, maturity from God, or a mixture of the two?
I was 18 when Greg and I married. I made a meal for us every evening but it was, lots of times, out of a box. Bless Greg's heart, he never once complained (and only gives me a hard time about it now.) ;) I bought flaked mashed potatoes, and crock pot dinners out of the freezer section. I'm not criticizing these dinners or anyone that makes them. But because of health issues in both of our families that I'm sure we'll inherit, God has put it on my heart to make things homemade more, mainly because of the differences in nutrition.
It's not just food though. Never once would I have considered making my own laundry detergent, or sewing my own crib set for my child (which I think I may be doing soon!) And don't even mention homeschooling! I always thought homeschooling parents were crazy! And now look at me, haha.
It's been little things here and there over time that I've changed but I'm thankful that I have made the changes. I made homemade chicken tenders and onion straws the other day, which have to soak in buttermilk for at least an hour. If I'd come across that recipe 3 years ago, I'd have passed it up as soon as I got to the buttermilk part because it would "take too long." Now, I find myself wanting to make homemade cinnamon rolls that have to sit and rise for 3+ hours!
I would love a Kitchenaid Stand Mixer for Christmas this year. All I can think is, "oh, the possibilities!"
None of this may matter to any of you and that's ok, it just makes me laugh to think about the changes that have happened in me over my marriage. I thank God for them because they're changes that have made me into a better wife and mother. And I'm constantly asking the Lord to change me into the wife and mother that He desires me to be...so I guess that answers my question from the beginning of the blog. :)
Happy anniversary, my love. I can't believe it's been 5 years, but they've been the best 5 years of my life and I wouldn't change a thing. You make me happier than I ever thought I could be, and I'm so thankful for the amazing husband you are to me. I love you, Gregory Douglas.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
She is getting so big that I can sit and watch my belly move. A few times this week, I have had a lopsided belly because she was on one side of it. The other day, I was laying on my side, and I felt a bump and Greg felt it and pointed out that it was probably her head because it was very round. I can't wait to kiss that little head! I love that she's getting big enough that we can identify different body parts.
I realized today that this pregnancy is going by SO much faster than Hunter's did. I don't know if it's because I was also waiting for my husband to return from Iraq, or because I have a 3 year old to keep me busy and pass the time, or maybe a mixture of both. I'm not sure. All I know is that I can't believe I'm 6 months pregnant already. I got preregistration papers and labor and delivery papers at the Dr's the other day. SO EXCITING! I'm sure she'll be here before we know it!
Monday, October 25, 2010
After refrigerating, we colored the fondant. We bought professional cake dye colors for the red and black since we wanted such rich colors. I don't know that regular food coloring would get a strong enough color if you wanted it to be really bright. Also, be prepared to have dyed hands because you knead in the color. Two days later I'm still trying to get all the red off my hands! Also, the longer the dye sits, the brighter it becomes. Our red wasn't as red as we've have liked it, but it became a truer red over time. Anytime you're dealing with the fondant with anything (whether it be your hands, or a rolling pin) at anytime during the whole process, make sure you spray it with Pam and keep doing this if it starts to stick again.
To make the cake, we started with an 11 x 15 sheet cake with 3 cake mixes. A frozen cake is easiest to carve because it doesn't break apart as easily. I cut it, stacked it, "glued" it with frosting, and carved the basic shape. Here is some of the carving taking place. A couple weeks ago, I made a 9 x 13 cake and did a smaller cake as a trial run to figure out how I'd carve it and if I was capable of it. I highly recommend a trial run!
This is the finished carved and crumb-frosted cake. We used chocolate graham crackers for the spoiler and chocolate donuts for the tires. We stuck toothpicks in a couple places to hold pieces together, but obviously just remember where you put them for when it's time to cut and eat the cake! There were a few spots that weren't as perfect as we would've liked them but we read somewhere that fondant is forgiving. As far as marshmallow fondant goes, this is not the case! If you see the three different pieces we used of graham crackers, we even had it draping in between the pieces and had to fill it with more fondant. The next step was to cover the cake with the fondant. We rolled the piece out on greased wax paper, and made sure the dimensions were as big as we needed them to be to cover the cake in one piece because it's virtually impossible to smooth two separate pieces together without being able to tell that's what you did. To cover the cake, it took us 8 different ways of starting before finding a successful way. It was a little nerve wracking because you only get one shot and the piece of fondant was so big it took 8 hands to get it on there! We had fondant rolled out on wax paper, then covered the top side with more greased wax paper. We slid it on a big cutting board, and started to wrap it under the cutting board, and peeled of the paper on top. We took that end, and started laying it on the cake, and slowly slid and unwrapped more fondant and layed it under the whole thing was covered. I hope that makes sense! Here it is right after we'd covered it. Please ignore my old lady-looking hands. In the picture, I'm trimming off the excess around the edges.
Decorating just consisted of dying white fondant a color and rolling it out and making whatever shape we wanted. To smooth out spots that needed it, we got our fingertips wet and just rubbed the spot until it almost melted the sugar and smoothed it.
Saturday was spent prepping all day. My mother and I made a fondant Lightening McQueen cake and it "only" took us 8 hours. My mother-in-law was a HUGE help for the 8 hours, because we would set a dirty dish down and it would magically become clean! :) She kept our workspace and dishes clean while we kept messing them up. The cake was lots of fun to make and I definitely learned a lot about dealing with fondant, but I don't want to bore you with the details of what it took to create it if you're not interested. That's why I decided to make a separate post about it if you'd like to read about it. Here is the finished product.
The party was Sunday afternoon. Here's a picture of the decorations. The crepe paper design was my mother in law's and was executed by both mothers since they didn't like me standing on chairs and the edge of the couch. Didn't they do a wonderful job??
Here's a picture of the birthday boy who wouldn't smile. Please note the M&M dye all over his mouth. The bowl of M&M's were taken away from the 3 and 5 year old not long after this picture was taken. :)
Our neighbors, and a couple friends of ours attended the party.
Friday, October 22, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Funny, twice in the last week I was told "you can't even tell you're pregnant!" I think these women need their eyes checked. Maybe it has something to do with cooler weather clothes though. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. But still, I heard that from them, and then the last two times I went shopping, two different cashiers asked me something about the pregnancy! My belly button shows through my shirt now so I know that's a giveaway too!
In other news, Hunter's birthday party is Sunday and I think mom is more excited than the birthday boy! Both sets of our parents are driving down for the party and I'm so excited that they will be here to share this special day with him. His cousin Andrew is also coming. I've been prepping him for this weekend all week and we told him who will be at the party. He smiles and brings up the Cars plates, cups, and napkins. Ahhh, the priorities of a 3 year old. ;) He does seem excited for them to come though, as much as he can be since I don't think he fully understands yet.
I've been getting the house ready all week for our guests and hope I can muster up a little more energy to push through and finish the cleaning. Can't wait for Friday!
Sunday, October 17, 2010
I stumbled upon a blog comment from my friend Jenny that she made back in January that said she played a fill-in-the-blank game with her son, David (who was about the same age then as Hunter is now.) We've started that with Hunter and he loves it! I say things like "Jesus is" and Hunter says "God's son." We also say, "The Bible is...God's Word." I plan on adding more as he gets more comfortable with them. Thanks Jenny!
Then today, Hunter learned about Daniel in the Lion's Den at church and his Bible verse was "I will pray." So at lunch, we brought those things up to him. He said a lion says, "rawr!" Then I asked if he learned a verse and put my hands in the praying position and he said, "Pray to God." Then we had a wonderful conversation about how we can pray to God if we need help like Daniel did. And when Hunter and mommy pray for daddy while he's at work, we're asking Him to help daddy. He seemed very interested in the whole thing and it's evident that he is retaining what they're teaching during the lessons at church.
Tonight during prayer before bed, we discussed that we can thank God for things, so we asked Hunter what he was thankful for and then prayed and thanked God for his list. His items were mommy, daddy, Bella (our dog,) God, and Daniel. :)
I am so thankful that God has answered my prayer and that Hunter is so willing to listen to it all!
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
Friday, October 8, 2010
I'm definitely getting closer to being the same size, but I'm not quite there. Some differences I notice is that my belly is slightly larger now, my face isn't as round (even though I weigh about the same,) and thank GOD we got rid of that awful couch.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
24 weeks is a big milestone! This is where the medical world considers the pregnancy viable, and should I go into labor that can't be stopped, doctors will do everything medically possible to save baby girl! Obviously, her chances of survival continue to rise significantly as the pregnancy goes on, but it still feels good to know that I'm past that marker.
My uterus is the size of a soccer ball! I figure that's something my husband can appreciate. I feel her moving so much now throughout the day. I've tried to get Hunter to feel her when she's being really active, but he just pulls his hand away and gives me a "why on earth do you want my hand to rest on your belly?!" look. Hopefully in the near future it will make more sense to him. :) The other night, Greg and I were laying in bed and I had my arm around him. I was just drifting off to sleep when he says, "Did the baby just kick my back?!" She was just saying hi, daddy! I thought it was cute. :)
We have a possible name. I'm trying it out and calling her by it to see if I like it enough to call her it for the rest of my life! Also, we've decided that we won't be sharing the name with anyone till she's here. You'll just have to wait on the edge of your seats.
I'm not quite sure if nesting is starting (I've read it CAN start this early) but I do know that I organized my pantry and deep cleaned my stovetop and oven yesterday. I was in the kitchen for hours scrubbing, and oh boy, did I feel that the rest of the night! Sleeping is getting difficult because I can only sleep on my sides but my hips ache so badly they keep me from sleeping. It may be a long 13+ final weeks...
Indigestion has slowly started to rear its ugly head in the past week. It's not bad now, but I'm very scared it's only going to get worse. And the thought of Tums makes me nauseous. This shall be interesting...
I think thats it for this week!
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Friday, October 1, 2010
We ended up going on Sunday after church, which I was thankful for because it was 10 degrees cooler that day.
Hunter had SO much fun. The farm we went to is only about 10 minutes from our house, so it was very convenient. It's also unlike any other petting zoo I've been to (not that I spend my time visiting them all over the country.) But in some of the areas where the animals were kept, you were allowed to walk in and roam free with them. We first stopped in with the goats, and it took Hunter a little warming up to the idea of petting them, but he eventually did. (Please ignore my finger.)
Chickens were all over the farm, because they could fit in between the gates. Hunter thought it was hilarious to chase after them!
Here is daddy and Hunter as they pet a chicken. It that cage, they also had turkeys (that Hunter enjoyed chasing too.)
After Hunter discovered the big wooden playground, we decided to take a break from animals and let him play. Here he is telling me he is "being careful."
They also had a big green tractor for kids to climb on and play on. There was a group of kids waiting to get on so we tried to distract Hunter with other animals, but he was having none of it until he got his turn!
We were also able to see horses, cows and donkeys, but Hunter had lost lots of interest by then. We were there about 2 hours so it was a full day for a toddler. He had so much fun, and of course, threw a fit when we said it was time to go. But, being that it's so close, we may be making future trips back there soon.