Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Ordinary Days

Really, there is not much going on now that school's back in session, and it's too hot outside to do anything fun. So, until it cools off, these pictures of our very ordinary August days will have to do.

Paige likes to dress up with random accessories.


Happiness, only 99 cents.


I just like how handsome he looks in this picture.


Playing pirates!


This morning while Kallie was taking a bath, Brandon was standing next to the tub, reaching for her little squirt toys. The moment I left to get Kallie's towel, I heard a big thump and then a cry. That must have been a big surprise for him, and even though he was crying, I just had to laugh and take a picture.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cream of Chicken Soup

I found out a few months ago that my daughter is allergic to soy, and I think that's what's been causing her rashes. Anyone who has a soy allergy in the family knows that soy is in LOTS of things! Salad dressings, mayo, buttery spread, spaghetti sauce, crackers, etc. Today I found out it is also in cream of chicken soup - I feel so sad because I have been feeding that to her for so long!

So, today I tried making my own "can" of cream of chicken soup, and it turned out great! Here's how:

3 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
1/2 Tbsp chicken bouillon
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 1/2 C milk

Melt butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour, chicken bouillon, salt, and pepper. Add milk all at once, and cook and stir until bubbly. I cooked it until it was pretty thick and then let it sit to thicken even more. It made more than your typical can of soup - maybe about 2 cups.

I used this in a chicken cornbread casserole recipe, and it was perfect for that. Maybe you can find a use for it, too!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Date Night

One day after a particularly stressful and busy week, I decided that Russ and I needed to have more fun together. So, I planned a night out. Planning is good, as our last spontaneous date didn't turn out very well when we had no plan and not much left in our entertainment budget.

First, we went to Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale. I didn't have any particular reason for choosing that place except that I remember my dad taking me and my sisters there when we were kids, and I remember thinking it was great just because of its name. What kid wouldn't want to go to Sugar Bowl? I used my Entertainment book 2-for-1 coupon, and we shared a sandwich and a giant banana split. Yum.

Afterward, we went up to north Scottsdale to a rock climbing gym called AZ On The Rocks (another place that had a 2-for-1 coupon). Russ was totally surprised that I would choose such a place. We watched a cheesy introduction video (Russ can't help himself, people... he has to crack jokes), and then we geared up. They had us sign a legal waiver basically saying we knew we could die from this. Great!

Since Russ had done this once before, he was the first to climb, and I was the first to belay (hold the rope). See, this worked out well for a date because, you know, we had to work together to survive! :) I was so nervous because the guy with ravioli breath was saying over and over never to allow my right hand to let go of the rope (we could die, right?). Pressure. I felt really awkward and slow at first, but after the first climb was over, I was starting to feel more confident. Then the guy told Russ to fake a fall, and I was all nervous again! But don't worry... he didn't die, even with my lame belaying skills.

Then it was my turn. Of course I looked down because I love to be scared, right? When I got to the top, the guy with ravioli breath told me to let go of the rocks and grab onto the rope. That felt a bit precarious, but I did it, and Russ brought me down safely.

After that, I was ready to conquer more. I surprised myself and Russ with how well I did. I even tried one wall that had a section that was slightly inverted, and I totally did it! I never fell, which was awesome since Russ fell once - though in his defense, he did successfully complete one climb that was slightly harder than any of the climbs I did. We did six climbs in all, and our arms and legs were worn out at the end. What a great way to burn off a banana split!

When we left, we told the guys that we hadn't paid yet, and they told us not to worry about it! Wow, that doesn't happen very often. So, I have to put in a plug for them - AZ On The Rocks! Fun!

Sorry, no pictures because I couldn't let go of the rope with my right hand :)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

First Day of School 2011

This year, Paige started second grade.




Kallie started preschool at her big sister's school. She feels all grown up! And I have to admit, she is growing fast.




I hope they have a great year!