Sunday, February 9, 2014

Ready to see my Soldier

  Tomorrow morning we head out to see out Soldier in Training become a United States Soldier. It will take us two days to drive to Missouri. We're taking the Little 2 with us. Sadly Twin#1 started a new job and isn't able to take off for the week. I spent the day sorting clothes and packing the rental Yukon. I really haven't been thinking too much about once we get there.

  But just a little while ago, we got a call from out Soon to be Soldier and it's just hitting me. My baby, my little 4 pound, plucked chicken, who needed to be in an incubator for the first two weeks of his life, is going to be a private in the Army. My emotions are all over the place right now. (poor Hubby) The days have been long, but now I realize the time has flown by and we're going to watch our child do the most important thing he's ever done. 

  I know when he walks a crossed that stage, I won't see the man the Army sees, I'll see my little boy, all dressed up playing GI Joe. But the truth is he'll belong to Uncle Sam for at least the next three years. So I'll need to be "Army Mom Strong" and try not to cry so I can get some good pictures of this momentous occasionI don't think they'll be tears of sadness or tears of fear. I think they'll be tears of pride and joy. And hopefully there will be at least one or two other moms who need a tissue to dry their eyes as they watch their little boy take a giant leap into being a man, a private, a US Soldier.

  I'll see this little boy playing "King of the Mountain"with his twin bbrother.

Twin #1 is on the bottom. Soon to be Soldier is sitting on top

Monday, February 3, 2014

More snow equals more pizza

 It's snowing (yet again) and the kids have another snow day.


Baby Girl asked if we could please make pizza for dinner again. Well since it means warming the oven, which will take the chill out the kitchen, and it will entertain her, which means she won't be bugging her older brother, pizza it is!!

I really like this recipe from King Authur Flour. I didn't have King Authur, so I used Gold Medal and it turned out just fine. In the directions you'll see they tell you to put mix your yeast with warm water and sugar to activate it. My kids love this part because "Look the yeast is farting" (thank you science channel)

If you really wanted to get into the science end of it with your kids on how and why the dough rises, this could be a good "science credit" But thanks to the the science channel (I'm thinking it was Beakman's World) my kids know that the dough rises because the yeast has gas, thus the "yeast is farting" jokes. (sorry we're not the most mature, high brow people in our area)

Ok so here's what our dough looks like once it rose (sadly I didn't think to take a before picture, but it was about 1/2 the bowl)

My lovely assistant

So now for the fun part, making a perfect round pizza dough with no holes in it. OK that so isn't ever going to happen. I do start out "tossing" the pizza, but it's more like I have my hands in prayer and I gently toss the pizza to get a little bit of stretch to it. Then we lay it down on a floured surface and use the rolling pin. I totally cheated and used parchment paper to rough out the dough on so I didn't make a hole in the dough when transferring to the pizza pan. This will only work if you've got someone to hold the paper as you roll the dough  (I know, bad cook, but I'm not Italian, so no one in my family cares) If you get a hole in your dough, just pinch it tightly, maybe put a little dab of water to seal it. I'm sure there's a right way to do this, but this way works for me, so take my advice for what it's worth. (and hey, don't stress, cooking, especially with the kids, should be fun). Once you've rolled the dough, just roll over the edge of the pie.

Ta Da the crust is done!

You can get as fancy with the sauce as you want. I used Prego Marinara sauce because it doesn't have a lot of "chunks" in it (Little Man doesn't like "chunks" on his pizza) We just used a spoon to spread it on, we used *maybe* a cup of sauce. I think it's one of those, put some on, oh, put some more on, till it's just right, type of thing.

"It's like I'm painting the pizza with sauce and a spoon"

Next step is the toppings. I like to sprinkle a little grated Parmesan then shredded mozzarella cheese. After that we topped half the pizza with slices of hotdogs. I know, you're saying ewww gross, but don't knock it till you've tried it. My mom would make pizza (a super yummy, rare treat since she had to make enough to feed 9) and hot dogs were a cheap topping. So the traditions carries on.

All ready to go in the 450 degree oven

  Now I didn't follow the instrutions to a T. I didn't let it rise again, once I rolled the dough (probably aanother no-no) I left the parchment paper under the dough so it didn't stick to the pan. And I just made one big round pizza, because it fit on my pan that way. Guess what? It still turned out pretty yuumy

Please note thick, tasty crust
 Now for some strange reason, my kids don't like the actual end, crust of the pizza (hello, that's the best part) but they loved this crust. Now that could have something to do with the fact that the Daddy put a little butter on his crust when he got to that part.

So if you're bored on a snow day, looking for something fun to do, make some pizza. If your kids are into veggies you could make this a lot healthier then I did. But tomato sauce with no chunks is as healthy as Little Man is going to get with his "no chunk" policy.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

You're in the Army now.

 Yup he's in the Army now and by extension, so are we. I do know I can't share much about where he goes or what he does, so this is more about me and to some extent the rest of the family and what we go through while waiting to hear from our Soldier. I didn't blog in the beginning because, well this mom was just too emotional and I didn't think I wanted to read back on those early days.

   I have some people to thank. First my dear friend Dawn (and her hubby too for answering my questions) she's been an Army wife for while a long while now, so she's been my sounding board, my shoulder to cry on and my "keep calm and carry on" when I just felt lost. So big hugs to you my friend.

     Also my group of internet moms (most of whom I've never met) and yet they surrounded me with love and read my sad words and reassured me we'd get through those first couple weeks of Basic training. (a couple of them had hubbies in the service and one even was in the service herself). 

   And most importantly I thank my Heavenly Father. I worried so often about how our Soldier was doing and all the while God was putting him right where he needed to be. (oh you of little faith).

    For those who don't know, Basic Combat Training (BCT) shuts down for Christmas/New Years so the Drill Sargent can spend time with their loved ones as well. Which means we got to spend time with our Soldier over the holidays as well. Which also meant this Army mama, got to hear it from the horse's mouth that the Army was treating him ok and his training is going well. That was a true blessing to our family. 

   So that's my little update on Son#2. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with my blog a little more. 

We'll try this again...

  Well I still haven't learned to disable the shortcuts on the lap top and the desk top has gone to that great cloud in computer Heaven, so I guess I'll just try to muddle through and see how it all goes.

   Some big changes at our house on the hill. Son # 1 has moved out on his own (renting from a friend). Son #2 has joined the Army, so this is an interesting journey as well. Baby Girl is now in school full time (big 1st grader) which means mommy is working in a new department during the day. (getting back to my roots and working the deli) So big changes all around

   Maybe I'll even tinker with the blog and change it up some.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I've been away for a while

 However.... I'm going to blame my laptop. ( I know big surprise me blaming technology, but whatever) For some reason, laptops are installed with all these great little shortcuts. I'm sure it's a great idea for some people, but not for me, because 1) I don't know what the shortcuts are and 2) I'm just typing away minding my own bee's wax and boom, my page is empty. Yeah total frustration. I will be working on my desk top though, because I really do miss blogging, so.... in the very near future.... Baby Girl's birthday party and things I make with "Precious" (my Kitchaid Mixer)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

A little Christmas treat

   So Baby Girl wanted to be a little elf to her classmates and give them each a little gift. We've been trying to instill more the giving side of Christmas, instead of just the "what's under the tree for me" side, so I couldn't really say no. But with Christmas less then a week away and the budget tight, what's a mom to do? Oh just recycle an old bridal shower party favor idea.

   I got some plastic spoons for under $2. A bag of Hershey Kisses for less then $4 and a roll of  Christmas cellophane for $1 for the roll. I put three kisses in the spoon then wrapped the spoon and Kisses with the cellophane and tied it all up with some curly ribbon from the Christmas wrapping bag.  My writing isn't something to brag about about so I went to the computer to print out a little saying to attach, well you know it can't be that easy, of course the printer isn't working. Up to visit my parents and borrow Pop's computer and printer. After I figured out how to make columns again (man I need to keep a little more up to date on Word) I was good to go. 

    So this is the final project, under $10 and a little treat for all 14 classmates...

This is a close up of the tag
  Baby Girl was thrilled to be a little elf to her friends and I hope they like their little gift. 

  Oh and just because I think she's just the cutest little girl I know, here she is all dressed up for her "Christmas Concert"

 Yes that's the same green curly ribbon in hair that we used to tie the treats with. 

                                   Merry Christmas

Friday, August 26, 2011

Some more "rules for grocery shopping

  So we're in the path of the up coming hurricane, we don't live on the coast, but we're close enough that people are in "panic at the grocery store mode" So I thought I'd give some simple rules out to those who don't know any better....

  • It's not the cashier's fault that the store is out of the cheap store brand white bread, don't take it out on them. Be nasty to a manager if your really feel the need, but not the cashier.
  • If you're buying a whole bunch of tuna cans so you'll have something to eat, make sure you've got a manual can opener at home ( I jokingly said Remember you won't have your electric can opener to open the cans. Poor guy was in a panic as to where to find a manual canopener)
  • Fruit is just as easy to eat with no electric as junk food is, do you really want you kids all hyped up on sugar from Oreos and that sugary cereal if you're going to be stuck in the house in the middle of a storm?
  • This last one doesn't really have to do with the impending storm, but since I'm at it.... If you have varicose veins and you're pushing the backside of 40, you might want to rethink that short denim skirt you bought at Forever 21, it's just not a good look on you.

   I am so not looking forward to work tonight. People are acting like we're getting a foot of snow. By the time I get to work a lot of shelves will be bare and I just know it will somehow be my fault (because we all know the lowly cashier is the one who orders for the shelves and that there really is more stock in the back, we're just too lazy to go back and get it (insert eye roll here)

 So all you East Coasters be safe in the storm and remember to smile at your cashier when you're in line buying your cart full of bottled water, bread and peanut butter (if there's any left on the shelf)