Rhett

Rhett

Friday, May 15, 2015

Peach Dumplings

Good Friday morning!

MISCELLANEOUS #1 - For any moms out there who may not care for getting in the floor and playing games with your little ones, here are some suggestions I found which may make that time in your life a little easier/more pleasant/fun.

First, you are not a bad parent if you don't like to spend hours in the floor playing with your kid.

It is okay.

I happen to be a “little kid” person, so my most favorite ages to parent were birth to seven years of age. The "playing in the floor" stage was the most comfortable for me.

That just means different stages required me to work a little (or a lot) harder.

I was an okay “kid-kid” person.

I was an intimidated “middle school kid” person.

And I was at a total loss when it came to being a “teenage kid” person.

If you do not work harder during the stages in your kids' lives which you don't naturally excel...

Well, that might be a problem.

I have had three teenagers.

Two boys and one girl.

All different.

As was my practice, I practiced everything on Austin (my firstborn).

I tweaked everything on Joshua…

And I totally DID NOT try what had not worked on the first two with Roxie.

Needless to say, I am a better "teenage kid" parent RIGHT NOW, but I totally wish I had one or two more coming up so I could perfect my parenting skills for this stage before it is all said and done.

I have had to work much harder figuring out how to parent during the "teenage years" than I did during the "kid years."

So Fellow Moms...

Take heart!

If you are not a parent who enjoys getting in the floor and playing, your time is coming.

And until your time arrives (whatever stage of a child's development that may be), try these few ideas.

Take little breaks between your chores to spend one-on-one time. In between loading the dishwasher and making the beds, read four or five books to your little one.

After you scrub the tub, toilet and sink, add an inch or two of water to the tub, throw in some blue food coloring and dinosaurs and spend ten minutes in water play before heading to the next chore.

When you are cooking dinner, have a place prepared nearby with pots, pans and plastic spoons on the floor. Have kid music playing in the background, and spend that cooking time talking and singing with your little one(s).

Have a specific time of day to watch a show or DVD with your child. A 30-minute show in the morning and a 30-minute show or movie before or after dinner.

If you have mopped or scrubbed your kitchen floor recently, (weather permitting) there is nothing wrong with breakfast, lunch and/or dinner being served picnic style on the porch or deck.

This is automatically a fun thing AND something you would be doing anyway.

Folding clothes?

Put the little one(s) in a laundry basket close by and toss soft, stuffed animals and/or balls into the basket for them to throw back and forth.

While you fold, have your little one(s) reach into the dryer and bring nice, warm clothes to you for folding. Back and forth, back and forth.

Washing the car?

Two words... water play! Have sponges, buckets of soapy water and a hose nearby.

If you don’t want to take a nap when your child does, at least do something nice and quiet for yourself to help you have the energy to finish your day. Remember, you’re only halfway through the daily marathon when the kids go down, and you want to finish strong.

We have a very specific job as parents…

And it isn’t to be your child’s favorite playmate or friend.

It’s much more important than that.

"These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates." Deuteronomy 6:6-9

What better way to teach these commandments than when you are holding them, loving them, working with them and playing with them. “Impress them.”

MISCELLANEOUS #2 - MotherWalk - My family participated in our fourth MotherWalk in as many years this past weekend.


Zac, Mike, Katie and T. J.


Don't ask.


This Chick was our youngest walker/stroller this year at four months old! We were proud to have Judith on our team.


Roxie and Grandmother.


Roxie and Hunter.


Tommy, Zac, Austin, Melia and Katie.


Roxie and Hunter (again).


Team Tootsie... 16 STRONG!


Tommy, Zac and Bev.

Zac volunteered to wear the Survivor's Tiara since it hurt Grandmother's head.

He is such a giver.

MISCELLANEOUS #3 - We celebrated Grandmother's Mother's Day Saturday. We celebrated Mrs. Faulkner's Mother's Day Sunday...

But before we left for Oxford, I wanted just a few pics of my corsage because I didn't think it would be alive Wednesday when I celebrated my Mother's Day with my kiddos.

Roxie jumped right in to help with photography suggestions.




What would I do without her?

MISCELLANEOUS #4 - Because of work schedules, we celebrated my Mother's Day at AllSteak in Cullman.

Austin, Melia and Josh had never eaten there before, so it was fun introducing them to the joys of the world-famous orange rolls.



They were impressed, to say the least!

Peach Dumplings

You will need the following:

1 1/2 (8 ounce) cans crescent rolls
1 stick butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup orange soda
2 to 3 fresh peaches

1. Butter 8" x 8" baking dish.

2. Preheat the oven at 350 degrees.

3. Peel peaches and cut each into 4 to 6 slices.

4. Roll each peach slice in a crescent roll and place in a buttered dish.

5. Melt butter, stir in brown sugar, cinnamon, lemon juice and vanilla. When it is thick, remove from heat and pour over the dumplings.

6. Pour the soda in the middle and along the edges of a pan (NOT over the rolls).

7. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until they become golden brown.

8. You can sprinkle more cinnamon/sugar on top of the baked dumplings if you like.

9. Serve warm over vanilla ice cream.


Oh, so good!

Have a great weekend, and I'll talk to you before month's end.

Take care!

Sincerely,

The Enchanting Belinda

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Spring Pic Race

Good Tuesday morning!

I have much to talk about and not a lot of time, so let us get to it, shall we?

NUGGETS AND TIDBITS #1 - Roxie is graduating in 16 days, so there will be many busy days and nights preparing for that major milestone event.

This is my third graduation, and while you would think it would be a piece of cake, it is very different.

And I am not feeling as prepared as I thought I might be for the "third time around."

NUGGETS AND TIDBITS #2 - Josh has finished his last class at Wallace and will be receiving his Associates Degree in Criminal Justice. He decided he did not want to walk for his diploma, and he would rather celebrate his graduation from the Academy when that time comes.

It is against my nature to NOT celebrate each and every milestone (big or small) in the kids' lives, but I am assuming he knows what he wants, and we are looking forward to the Academy graduation in the future.

I will just take twice the pics I would have taken at the Wallace ceremony.

Don't ask.

In my mind, this makes perfect sense.

NUGGETS AND TIDBITS #3 - Mike and I saw The Avengers this past weekend, and it was worthy of the name "blockbuster" in every sense of the word.

RANDOMNESS #1 - We spent Easter with Mike's family this year... which means we were around small children!

Love holidays with little kids... and bigger ones!


I took this pic of Roxie and Mikie before we headed to Oxford... before they changed out of their Easter frocks.


Lauren immediately crawled into Melia's lap to "catch up."


Mackenzie, Amber and Jared looked wonderful in their Easter garb.

Fun fact for you... Amber is having another baby this month. We don't know when and we don't know what, but we are very excited to meet this new little one.


Matthew.


Lauren.


Austin and Melia. This was their first Easter together as a married couple.

RANDOMNESS #2 - Mike had a business meeting in Memphis a couple of weeks ago, and I decided to tag along.

And when I say "I decided," I mean I begged him to take me with him.

And he did.

We stayed at the Peabody (which was a first for both of us), and there were ducks, ducks, ducks everywhere.


Duck soap in the bathroom.


Of course, ducks in the lobby.


And even ducks in the elevators.

While Mike was in meetings all day Thursday, I made plans for just me.

I did the research, and the things I was interested in doing by myself included:

1. The Memphis Zoo and Aquarium
2. The Botanical Gardens

It all came down to the following...

The Gardens were 8.7 miles from The Peabody.

The Memphis Zoo and Aquarium was 4.3 miles away from The Peabody...

And I only had to make two turns total from the hotel parking lot.

And it was in a safe part of town.

I know. I am not a brave chick when it comes to exploring unknown cities all by myself, and I should be ashamed...

But the Zoo won.

And I had a fabulous four hours wandering around.


As soon as you walk through the entrance, there is a wading pool full of toddlers cooling off with young mommies sitting on the edge.

Brilliant idea.



My main reason for wanting to visit The Memphis Zoo in the first place was to see the pandas up close and personal.

As luck would have it, they were practically the last exhibit I saw before heading back to Mikie.


This is the girl panda. She was so clean and ladylike eating her bamboo.

She did not disappoint.

And then I walked to the next enclosure.


As you can tell, there was a pretty big difference between the girl panda and the boy panda...

One being his lack of a clean, shampooed head, and the other being his poor table manners while cramming bamboo into his mouth.

Nevertheless, I enjoyed him, too.


And then there was the elephant exhibit.

There were three or four elephants, but one of them was very active.



We had chicken and waffles for the very first time at Miss Polly's Kitchen.

At one time in my life, I thought chicken and waffles did NOT go together.

Obviously, I was very, very wrong.


Mike and I took several selfies on top of The Peabody.


Some were better than others...


Obviously.


We like to try to find a Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives restaurant whenever we go to a different city.


The Elegant Farmer was our choice for Memphis. We had a really delicious "farm to table" meal on the patio.


And before we left for home, we ate at the world-famous Rendezvous. It was our first time, but not our last.

RANDOMNESS #3 - My sister and I went to Pepper Place Saturday morning, and after we dog watched, bought tomato plants and wandered in and out of all of the booths, she suggested we go to a nearby store called Frontera.

She kept calling it an "iron place."

I had no idea what she was talking about, but when I walked into the store, I was happy.












You're probably thinking it is just a place to buy the odd iron goat or chicken, but it is so much more.

Inside are some beautiful dining room tables and unique chairs, signs, chandeliers...

And outside the store is a whole other world of items like iron gates and rusted wedding candelabras and funky bird feeders and votive holders.

You really need to just go there yourself, because I cannot really do it justice.

Needless to say, I will be going back...

Probably to purchase the blue iron goat.

And I shall name him Percy.

Spring Pic Race

Since Easter was here and there this year, everyone came over the Tuesday after Easter to collect their baskets... or in this case, buckets.

And we played the game I made up, but I tweaked it just a little bit.

Before the guys could even come in the house, I handed all the couples (Austin/Melia, Josh/Courtney, Hunter/Roxie) an instruction sheet. The team that had the most "correct" pictures from the sheet won two free car washes.

Can we just say, everyone was pretty competitive.


I made Couple Easter Buckets and I used Dollar Tree plastic items in orange and green as a color scheme. Since the event took place two days after Easter, I decided to go with Spring colors, and I skipped the Easter pastels.



Hunter and Roxie won the race, but Josh, Courtney, Austin and Melia took the disappointment well.

And when I say "well," I actually mean no blows were exchanged.

SPRING PIC RACE

READ EACH TASK CAREFULLY. LEAVING SOMETHING OUT CAN RESULT IN LOSS!

YOU HAVE 35 MINUTES. DO AS MUCH AS YOU CAN IN THAT AMOUNT OF TIME, AND THEN RETURN TO THE HOUSE. FOR EVERY 5 MINUTES YOU ARE LATE, I WILL DEDUCT 1 POINT.

APPOINT A PICTURE-TAKING PERSON.

1. YOU WILL RECEIVE 1 POINT FOR EACH AND EVERY EASTER FLAG YOU FIND STILL FLYING. TAKE A PICTURE!

2. YOU WILL RECEIVE 1 POINT FOR EACH AND EVERY GREEN HOUSE YOU FIND. (THE HOUSE ITSELF MUST BE GREEN. A GREEN DOOR OR GREEN SHUTTERS ONLY DO NOT COUNT!) TAKE A PICTURE!

3. YOU WILL RECEIVE 1 POINT FOR EACH AND EVERY CROSS YOU SEE IN FRONT OF A CHURCH. (TAKE A PICTURE!)

4. BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR A TULIP BED OR A BUNCH OF JONQUILS. TAKE A PICTURE OF ONE OR THE OTHER ANY TIME DURING THE RACE. (YOU ONLY HAVE TO FIND 1.)

BEFORE YOU GO TO NUMBER 5, YOU MUST HAVE AT LEAST ONE PIC OF A FLAG… A GREEN HOUSE… A CROSS AND A TULIP OR JONQUIL BED. AT LEAST ONE!

YOU CAN KEEP TAKING PICTURES OF MORE OF THESE ITEMS AS YOU COMPLETE 5, 6 AND 7!

5. PULL THE CAR OVER. SOMEWHERE IN THE CAR, YOU WILL FIND A $5 DOLLAR BILL. BEFORE STARTING TO DRIVE AGAIN, TAKE A PICTURE OF SOMEONE HOLDING THE DOLLAR BILL.

6. GO TO WALMART AND USING THE $5 YOU HAVE JUST FOUND, PURCHASE 1 EASTER ITEM. YOU HAVE TO USE THE CHANGE FROM THE $5 TO PURCHASE SOMETHING ELSE LATER ON, SO LOOK FOR SOMETHING CHEAP! IF ANOTHER TEAM HAPPENS TO PURCHASE THE SAME ITEM, IT WILL CANCEL BOTH TEAMS OUT, AND NO ONE WILL RECEIVE THIS POINT.

7. GO TO CHICK-FIL-A AND BUY A SMALL/KID’S SIZE “FEATURED” SHAKE OR A SMALL/KID’S SIZE FROZEN LEMONADE. PARK THE CAR AND DRINK THE SHAKE UNTIL EMPTY. EACH MEMBER MUST DRINK AT LEAST ONE DRINK FROM THE SHAKE. (TAKE A PICTURE OF THE EMPTY CUP.)

8. HEAD BACK TO THE FAULKNER’S FOR DINNER!

That's all I have for today. There are a million and one festivities planned for the month of May (Mother's Day, Graduation, Cinco de Mayo, etc.), so i will gather any and all useful information and try to hop back on the blog before too long.

Take care, and I'll talk to you soon.

Sincerely,

The Enchanting Belinda
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