Monday, March 17, 2014

Spring Bike Ride

We have had a few days of spring-like weather. Of course it is supposed to snow today, but we will take what we can get. We took a lovely family ride along the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal and explored  around the banks of the Potomac. We only had one near-death experience when Nash decided to ride his bike over the Chain Bridge instead of pushing it.  He almost crashed into on-coming rush hour traffic. I think it was my maniacal screaming that saved his life. I cannot wait until we can have these adventures everyday.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

All-About Nash

(Nash at his school's ice-skating party at the Washington Capitals Practice Facility)
Nash is growing up much faster than I would like him to.  He had his first away-from-home-friend sleepover last weekend.  When I dropped him off I told him to call me if he got nervous or sad.  At 10PM I got a phone call.  The caller-id told me it was from Nash.  I must admit I was pretty excited that he might need me or miss me.  I answered. "Hi Mom!" (Hi, buddy what's wrong?)  "Nothin' ! Just wanted to say Peace Out, Home Dog!" (Click)  Well, it wasn't exactly the phone call I was expecting or wanting but it was something.  I also wanted to brag on Nash for a bit. Last semester he won his school's citizenship award for showing kindness and respect for others.  So, while he wants us all to believe he is super macho he has a genuinely kind heart-a mischievous heart, but a kind heart.  Things have been challenging for him, especially at school this year.  I am not writing this to embarrass him but rather I hope he reads it someday and realizes how much he has overcome with hard work and perseverance and that he can do anything he puts his mind and heart into.  He has made so much progress because he is determined to be a success and he is the greatest success story I know. He is smart, talented and loving and I'm so proud he is my baby boy.
(He loves watching Hockey. I think the Olympics peaked his interest.)
(One of Nash's favorite spots-perched on top of the counter playing Angry Birds or Star Wars!)

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Marble Mazes

I am always looking for something to keep the kids, especially the boys, entertained for a few minutes.  This winter I have needed a lot of ideas to pass the time during the cold weather.  A few weeks ago I had them make marble mazes from their LEGO's.  They really got into it and made and tore apart several different mazes before moving on to their next disaster.

Friday, March 14, 2014

3.14-Pi Day

Happy 3.14! The only day when having pie for dinner is perfectly acceptable and a family tradition. May I just add it couldn't have come at a better time, after getting a call from one son's teacher, an e-mail from another son's teacher, an unrelated fight at the bus stop where one of the aforementioned son's was beat-up by a girl and a 3 year old that has decided she no longer wants to be potty trained and prefers that we call her Lady Bug Dracula-I really needed a sugar fix.

Girl's Weekend

In February I abandoned my family for a girl's weekend in Las Vegas.  I met up with some friends who abandoned me in Virginia for new homes in Utah, California and Arizona. Unlike me, I didn't take too many pictures but perhaps that is better because what happens in Vegas should probably stay in Vegas. Some of the highlights were going to see Britney Spears, eating at Gordon Ramsay's Steak House in the Paris Casino and of course IN-N-Out Burger, but mostly just being with good friends is like group therapy for the soul.  At first I felt a little guilty leaving my mommy duties behind for a few days, but it was so much fun and rejuvenating. I came back a much better mom.  Moral of the story-more girl's weekends are essential to be an effective parent. Miss you girls. Thanks for such a fun weekend.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

A Toy Worth the Investment

I ordered the kids some Metro Mags for Valentine's Day. They arrived just in time for them to play with during several snow storms.  With the exception of LEGO's my children don't play with any toy for long especially Harley. But each one of them love these and play with them every day. Essentially, they are magnetic tiles in different shapes and sizes.  I had to pass on how happy I am with this toy since it is such a rare occurrence. There are several brands including Magformers and Magna Tiles and I believe most are comparable to the Metro Mags.  They are expensive but are worth it.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

PF Chang's Mongolian Beef Copycat

This is our families new favorite recipe.  Nash absolutely loves Chinese food and he asks for this every night. It is one of the only recipes that the entire family will eat without complaint.

Sauce Ingredients
1/2 Cup Soy Sauce
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
3 Cloves Garlic
2 tsp. Ground Ginger
2 tsp. Vegetable Oil
Combine all ingredients and let simmer for 10 minutes
1 to 2 lbs. Flank Steak
1/4 Cup Flour
3/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
Bunch of Green Onions
While sauce is simmering cut flank steak into thin pieces across the grain and place in a gallon Ziplock bag with 1/4 cup flour. Coat meat with flour and place in hot vegetable oil.  Cook meat until done about 7 minutes. Remove oil and pat meat dry with paper towel add sauce and diced green onions to meat.  Cook an additional 5 minutes and serve over rice. Adding broccoli to the meat is also delicious.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Boogers or Brain Juice

(The boys dressed up for career day-a pilot and a soldier)
Warning:  If you are queasy do not read this post!
Last week while waiting for the bus Atley made a giant sneeze, one that resulted in goobers being projected all over the car. I thought I had it all cleaned up until Nash went to get out of the car and I noticed his hair was covered in snot.  As I hurriedly began to clean it up, he said, "Stop mom! Is some of the snot red and bloody?"  My reply, "Yeah!" His answer, "Then leave it there. It will look so cool. I'll tell everyone my head has been busted open and it is brain juice leaking all over me!"  Atley and Harley agreed that Nash's idea was fantastic, but being the terrible mother I am, I decided to clean the snot off of his head.  He wasn't sure he could ever forgive me, but I am hopeful he will be able to work through it.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Pray for Spring

I'm failing.  Not only with keeping up on my blog but keeping up with my life.  My house is in a state of disaster, as is my car, my responsibilities at church, my kids and my mental state.  I am behind on everything and it isn't because I am over-booked or over-worked. I have had to restart the same load of laundry in my washing machine 4 times because I keep forgetting and the clothes get sour before I remember to put them in the dryer.  The only thing I am motivated to do is binge watch Gossip Girl and eat chocolate chip cookies. What is wrong with me? Never fear! I know exactly what the cure is. I need a healthy dose of Vitamin D, and I don't mean the kind from a glass of milk. I NEED SUNSHINE!  I need spring to get here in a hurry and I need this hellish winter to leave immediately.  Unfortunately, I have no control over the weather so be warned and aware that until I get a string of 70 degree days, you can expect very little of me in terms of production.  We have had 11 snow days this year and at least a dozen delayed starts.  Missing school or starting late is more the rule than the exception. We cannot get into a groove and it is getting old. I might have to sell a kidney to pay our heating bill if it doesn't warm up soon. Consider your self warned groundhog, if you see your  rodent shadow in Punxsutawney, PA next year I will murder you with my bare hands.  Here are some of our most recent snow pictures and if any of my Arizona or California friends even think that it looks like fun just go ahead and get in line behind your furry friend Phil because you are NEXT!
 (Can someone remind me of how miserably cold I have been all winter in July when I start complaining about the heat?)