{Theme of the Week} Red, White & Blue




Crafts: Star Glitter Garland, Star Necklace and Red, White and Blue Drums

Edible Fun: Flag made from snack food, Jello Jars {Jello+ whip cream + blueberries in baby food jars}, Banana and Blueberry Flag Snack & Marshmallow Pops

Letter, Numbers & Colors: Surprisingly —-F, 4 and red, white & blue!

Books: Hat’s off for the Forth of July and Forth of July-Sparkly Sky

Activities: Red, white and blue picnic with friends &  drumming in the sunshine



June2009Drums-4th-of-July-EJ-MC-BAC000The drums are Quaker Oatmeal boxes covered with fancy paper.  I filled the drums with dried beans & rice for a little added noise making fun.  The straps are made from thick ribbon— simply slip ribbon in small hole on each side and tie a knot inside the drum to secure.



Thanks Kirsten for making the ADORABLE garland and necklace with the kiddos!!

May you have a joyful and safe Forth of July!

Mason's Favorite Appetizer


Grandpa Hank’s steamed artichoke recipe will ROCK your world. Learn how to perfect this culinary delight for a gourmet style KIDS-LOVE-IT pre-dinner treat.  {IF I CAN DO THIS— trust me… so can you! }

  1. Select artichokes by size of stem and freshness. Larger is better.
  2. If the stem is long enough, cut off about ½” and put artichoke atop a vase or jar with the stem immersed in water and keep in a window for a day or two.
  3. Begin preparation by putting a steamer pot on the stove with about 1” of water and medium heat.
  4. Add about ½ tsp of sea salt, 2 glugs (about 4 Tbs) of apple vinegar, 2 squirts (about 2 Tbs of lemon juice), and two shakes of PICKLING SPICE ( 1 TBS) to the water.
  5. Allow this mixture to approach simmer as you prepare the artichoke.
  6. Cut the artichoke stem to about ½” from the bottom and trim about 1” off the top. Cutting horizontally across the top with a very sharp chef’s knife works or use kitchen shears.
  7. Place a steamer rack in the pan and set the artichoke in right side up. Turn up the heat on the mixture to boiling.
  8. Place a flat slice of lemon across the top of the artichoke. Cover the pot with a close fitting lid and adjust heat so the just a little bit of steam is perking out.
  9. Steam for 45 min
  10. Server hot or cold, with ranch style dipping sauce… more on that later!

The number one KEY to this recipe is the PICKLING SPICE— it will make your house smell like a slice of heaven…


This may be the only recipe you will ever find on my blog. It’s that good.

I love naptime

Yes, when I say LOVE, I mean LOVE.



Okay, okay… playtime is fun too!

And if I had to pick between the two… I’d say BOTH please! Rest and fun. Peace and craziness. Thank you God for these wonderfully sweet moments. I cherish them all.


Countdown to Candy Land

Mason will soon be FIVE!

 To celebrate we are going to have a CANDY LAND birthday bash!!

Here is our party countdown board made from a recycled Candy Land game– June2009MC-EJ-dancing-Flag-Food003

Each morning Mason gets attach {glue stick} a candy to the board.

Once all the numbers are filled— it’s PARTY TIME!


I added old birthday pics to spice up the count down. The cake smash photo was from his third b-day.


And you have to see this amazing amazing thank you note and gift I received from Carrie— she was the Hudson jeans winner!  {her blog here}

I’m in awe!  The creative details are just so beautiful…


What an a treasure! Thank you for the thank you Carrie!


Strawberry Smiles!

Summer is upon us!

  I’m starting a new learning-creating-celebrating idea… Theme of the Week!

  My goal is to pick one person, place or thing and run wild with it.  I’ll see what sparks the kids interest and then we will celebrate that theme all week long.  This week, you guessed it, strawberries.




Craft: “Strawberries for Sale!”  Add felt strawberries with green button stems to a little egg carton lined with fabric!

Food: Fresh Strawberry Jam {Mason and Mama’s first attempt at canning ANYTHING.}

Letter, Color & Number: Take a wild guess!

Activities: Set up a pretend strawberry stand— come and get your fresh juicy strawberries here!!!

Books: Bread and Jam for Francis, Five Little Strawberries, Sweet Strawberries & The Little Brown Mouse and The Red Ripe Strawberry and The Big Hungry Bear

June2009BC-Strawberry--027 Blaise has a new favorite food! He was diggin these big time, but the rest of the crew wasn’t particularly excited about them.



June2009BC-Strawberry--000The jam actually turned out pretty tasty. A bit tart, but you can’t beat the freshness. I used the super simple recipe on the Ball No Cook package. Clean up, not so fun. Fancy fabric and twine wrap, very fun.


Can I tell you how much fun this has been?

It was like we had one big strawberry party all week long. Wow— it’s 1:30am… I wanted to post Mason’s Baby Strawberry photos for nostalgia, but I better get some shut eye.

Cheers for summer!

Papa. Daddio.

A little Father’s Day gush gush…

Papa. My dad. Creative. Charming. Smart. Witty. Competitive. Passionate. Generous. Loving. Stubborn. Fun. Driven. Dedicated. Extraordinary. That’s him. And I cherish him beyond belief.  The greatest thing about our father-daughter relationship is that we truly enjoy each other.  He is the most amazing dad in the universe… I thank our Heavenly Father daily that He gave me such a precious gift.

My dad taught me; you can achieve anything, anything in this world, if you put your mind, heart and soul to it.

Daddio. My husband. An unquestionably amazing dad.  His dedication, passion and unconditional love for our kids shines through in everything he does.  Our kids really hit the jacketpot with daddio….  we can’t just get enough of him.

Yes, sometimes dream come true.  Here’s proof.


Happy Father’s Day all!!


I unabashedly admit, I put bows on Emerson whenever possible. Purses, accessories, and all things girly usually accompany the obnoxiously bright & big bows. Yes. I love it and I’ll do as long as she lets me!

Tool Time!