Wednesday, July 29, 2009

America's Funniest Home Videos

I was looking through old pictures this morning with the kids. There is a picture I have been hunting for to go with a blog post that has been writing itself inside my head for the past few days.

We ended up watching home videos for a about an hour instead. I still have not found the picture. Sad.

Then we stumbled across this video. I had totally forgotten all about it.

It was so hilarious we could not help but watch it 500 times. We were laughing so hard tears were streaming down our faces.

I don't really know if it's as funny as I think it is.

You know how it is, when someone makes a big deal about how funny something is and then you see it and you're like, "That was lame!"

Well this may be lame to you, but to me is was classic.

This video was taken August 14, 2007, nearly 2 years ago.

Beano had come in the house with a handful of bolts and screws and told me he did not want his training wheels anymore. When I went out side I discovered he had taken them off all by himself and that we was riding the bike solo.

He totally robbed his dad of the inherent right of the first bike ride ceremony. He did not get to talk and laugh with his boy as together, they took off the training wheels. He did not get to sit him down and show him how to stear or what to do if he were headed for a tree (or his mom). He did not get to run behind the bike holding onto the the seat, then let go to see the magic that was his boy riding solo.

Nope, none of that.

In the blink of an eye we went from sweet little 3 year old tricycle riding boy to big boy riding all by himself, no help from anyone. Literally.

The first few rides were a little rocky. In fact I was sure that at any moment he would get too frustrated and just give up, but he never did. We have about 10 videos of him crashing, then getting frustrated, then getting right back on. This experience was one of the first that showed me just how much stick-to-itive-ness this sweet little boy has.

He has the determination of a hungry bear.

P.S. I was very pregnant with Baby Cakes in this video, viewer beware!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Want Some Ice Cream With Those Smart Pills?

"This is the funnest day of my life!"

Doodle could not stop saying that all day long yesterday!

I must admit, it was a really fun day!
We started our day with the Ogden Pioneer Day parade.
Pioneer Day is a Utah state holiday celebrating the day the Mormon pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley and I guess officially settled Utah.

The parade us fun, except the part when the boys went to the bathroom and plastered it with wet paper towels and got Mr bird so mad he almost cancelled the rest of the days' festivities.
The floats were fancy, the horses were prancy and the rodeo queens were sparkly.
After the parade we headed to Fort Buenaventura for some fun pioneer era games and live fiddle music.
We all got to watch a sheep get sheared with real shears with really sharp blades. As the guy was shearing the poor thing he paused to pull the wool back and let the kids feel the pillowy soft fleece. Just at that moment the sheep decided to poo! We all got a very close look at sheep manure. The kids were like, "EEEEWWWW, gross! It pooped!" The mountain man said that was not poo, but smart pills. He said, "Go ahead, try one!"

Some of the other kids did not get his joke.
"Are you sure?" Said one very trusting boy? "They look a whole lot like poo!"

"See, you're getting smarter already!"

After the sheep we made a corn husk doll like the one Laura Ingalls Wilder played with as a very little girl. Then we went and saw how they spun the wool into yarn. Doodle helped carve a wooden sign.
We saw candle dipping and lots of pioneer era guns. Beano though the guns were the best part. We saw one just like the one Pa Ingalls would have used to hunt.
After all the festivities we came home and crashed for a while. Then we made dinner for the kids and headed out for date night. Doodle got to join us (she's so lucky!).
We went to her favorite restaurant, Javier's.
After we ate we wanted to do something fun, but everything we tried to do was a bust. Being a state holiday, nearly the whole town was shut down.
So we winged it.
Over the last year or so Ogden city has been commissioning local artists to paint plastic horses to decorate the down town streets.
Most of them are right around historic 25th street.
So we parked our car at one end of 25th and started walking. We made our own tour of the painted horses.
We had so much fun. 25th street is lined with cute little shops and antique stores. Most of them were closed, but we had fun just looking through the windows.
Lucky for us we found a shop open that sells ice cream, we could not pass that up!

At the end of 25th street is Union Station, a huge train depot with a cool train museum inside.
The museum was closed, but we walked around the train yard and looked at the antique trains they have outside.

Then we walked down the other side of the street, looking at all the cool shops and painted horses on our way back to our car.
I loved, loved, loved having Doodle with us. I really treasure the time we get one on one with all the kids. It is so fun to see each individual personality and to just be with them. I love that girl more than any other girl on this planet.
We came home with sore feet and fun memories.
What a great Holiday!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Homemade Teriyaki Sauce

Boy have I got a treat for you!
This tasty meal is an all time favorite at our house. I made it last night and all of my kids agreed that I should make this everyday!
Now that it's summer and we can fire up the grill outside I'm all for it!
This is my favorite part of the meal. I love grilling veggies outside.
I ate more veggies than anything else.
First I drizzled them with olive oil and coarse ground sea salt and fresh crushed garlic.
Then I skewered them and placed them on the grill next to the chicken.
Simple, but divine.
I grilled the sliced pineapple last, just long enough to heat it and give it nice looking char lines.

Then I diced the chicken into bite size pieces and put them in our favorite pitas of all times, fresh from the oven, of course. Add some more sauce to the diced chicken and some lettuce and pineapple and you're ready to eat!
I love the sour dough pitas, but I use freshly ground spelt because of wheat allergies at our house. They come out phenomenal!
OK, since I love you all so much I'll share the love. Homemade teriyaki sauce is infinitely more flavorful than the bottled version, and it's super easy to make. Plus you probably have all the ingredients just laying around your pantry just waiting to be used. Try it tonight, you'll be glad you did!
Homemade Teriyaki Sauce and Glaze
1/2 C Soy Sauce
1 C Water
1/2 t Ground ginger (or fresh if you have it)
1-2 Cloves of garlic, minced
2T chopped green onion
5T Brown sugar
2 T Honey
2T Corn starch or tapioca flour
1/4 C Cold water
Combine first 7 ingredients in a small sauce pan. Heat just until it starts to bubble. In a small bowl combine the corn starch and 1/4 cup of water and stir well. Add the corn starch mixture to the sauce and heat while stirring until sauce thickens, this will be very fast. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Marinate 2 chicken breasts with about half of the sauce for up to 24 hours. Grill chicken, basting with sauce often. When chicken is cooked through remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes before cutting. This keeps the chicken unbelievably moist. Brush the chicken once more with the reserved sauce.
Try not to look like a ravenous wolf as you inhale the best chicken you have ever eaten!
Store left over sauce in an air tight container in the fridge for up to a week.
The sauce can also be used for veggies, pork, or beef.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

It's Independance Day!

Have I mentioned that I love Independence Day?
And what a day it was this year.
We started bright and early at 6am and did not get home until after 11:00 that night.
We are one tired family today.

We started the day with a healthy dose of exercise. Mr Bird ran the 5K while I walked it (Stubborn knee!). My wonderful nephew Josh and his cute wife Tiffany watched our kids while I walked. I took 2nd place in the walk though, not too shabby.

I know, I know, it's not as cool as 2nd place in the run, but still, there were lots of walkers! I did really well, but today my bum is sore!

After the 5K we all participated in the bike parade. I hauled Dubs and baby Cakes in the decked out wagon while Mr Bird took Doodle and Beano on their bikes.

They get to ride the parade route and they look forward to it every year, as do I.

I love being in the parade!
The city parade was next. The weather was perfect! Most years by 9am we are frying in the hot street like a slice of bacon in a skillet. This year, however, there was a nice breeze and cloud cover and nice cool temperatures.

It just would not be the 4th without getting wet! After lunch Mr Birds hooked the hose to the slide in the back yard and let the kids go to town.

Those nice parade clouds scared me for a while in the afternoon.

They actually started raining on us for a minute. I was all panicked that the fireworks would get rained out.

Luckily, the rain lasted all of 5 minutes, then the clouds broke and it was clear skies the rest of the day.

This is why I love Independence day.
I love being carefree with my kids and my lover and hanging out in the yard, just being together.

Then it was on to Lisa and Brads house for our annual BBQ. Lisa had the horses out and baby insisted that she take him for a ride. It looks like we have another horse freak on our hands!

And of course it just would not be the 4th without a flag cake. Lisa and Jordana did a fantastic job.
See how pretty I am at 10pm after a long day outside? We had a perfect spot for the fireworks thanks to our lovely friends, Rick and Shelly! They got to the park early and pinned down a spot for us. We sure do love those guys.

Baby Cakes loved his first sparklers. He also loved the fireworks. He ooooed and ahhhhhhed with the best of them.
We had such a fun day.
Good family times, good friends, good food and good times!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Let the Celebrations Begin!

I love, love, love Independence Day!
Next to Christmas it's my favorite holiday.
I love all the parades and BBQs and melon and fireworks!
We have been busy little bees this week getting ready for the big day.
We made each of the kids a fun hat out of newspaper and paint and glitter. We also made fun star wavers so they can wave them at the floats as they pass.
For those we used empty cracker boxes that we cut into a star shape and painted and added glitter designs. Then we added cute ribbon and glued it all to sticks we found in our yard. Sometimes it really helps to have a willow tree. We get some pretty cool sticks for the kids to play with and for me to craft with!
If you have not made any 4th of July crafts with your kids, it's not too late. Grab some old newspaper and cereal boxes and get to work! There's still time left before the big day!
Every year our kids love to ride in the bike parade. Since Baby Cakes is still a bit too little to ride, we dressed the wagon for the occasion. Just imagine it with a cute baby waving, dressed from head to toe in red, white and blue. Oh, I just can't wait!

The kids had so much fun decorating their bikes, it took us 2 days to get all the bikes and the wagon in tip top shape.
I can't wait to post pictures of the final product on the day!
Before the bike parade Mr. Bird is running in our city's 5K. I want to run too, but I have 4 heathens to look after. I thought about doing the 5K walk with them all, but we did a practice walk this week and it did not go so well.
After the 5K the kids will start off our city's parade with the bike parade. Hundreds of kids show up with sparkly bikes and wagons and scooters and ride the parade route. It is the highlight of the day for our kids. They talk about it all year long! After the bike parade we stay for our city's parade and oooh and aaaah over all the colorful floats. Since we live so close to the air force base we usually get an F-15 buzz the parade. Although, they are always taking off and landing practically on top of our house, so we usually don't even notice the huge F-15 just feet above our heads. After the parade we head home to get our picnic items ready to have our family BBQ.
This week it will be at dead Aunt Lisa's house.
Yup, you guessed it, after dark we gather at the park with about a million other people to watch the spectacular fireworks display!
The fireworks are my favorite part. I wish they would go on forever!
Let the Parades begin!

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things

I decided I need one of these.

My 12 year old niece and her 9 year old brother stayed with us for a week while their parents were on vacation in Hawaii without them.

Sammy was so helpful to have around.

She loves babies. Lucky for her I just happen to have one!

Whenever he fussed at my feet while I was making dinner she swooped in and held him and played with him and took him outside before I could even turn to look at him.

Dinner making and shower taking have never been so peaceful.

I need a 12 year old baby lover around here full time.

I really miss having a live in nanny.

This has to be my favorite way to spend a summer evening.

Hanging out in the yard eating watermelon with my kids.
Does life get any better than this?

And then there are these beauties.
Our back yard is full of day lilies.
They only bloom for a day, then that blossom dies and the next day new blossoms have opened up for their one day in the sun.
Most every day this week my kids have brought me a handful of these bright summery blooms to brighten and cheer my dinning room table.
Thanks kids, keep up the good work!