My Month In Photos Is Going To Be Late

We have been having so much fun this holiday season, there is just no way I can get the Photo-a-day pictures up for you for a little while longer. But to ease your pain and disappointment, here are just a few of what I have taken this month! Enjoy! 

(Oh, and these are out of order, if you follow along with Fat Mum Slim's list, which you can get here.) 

Have a Safe and Happy New Year!!!! 


Gone Fishing! ~ Wordless Wednesday

I hope everyone has had a wonderful Christmas, and has been able to take it easy! 
I'm sure Santa is doing the same today!

Enjoy your family and friends!
Merry Christmas! And Happy Holidays! 


Holy-Awesome Gift, Batman!

And the winner for the most played with gift goes to the Batcave. 

Thank you Santa! You rock! 

Merry Christmas, from our Super Hideout to yours!


Our Elf on the Shelf

We have one of those elves. The ones who come to life and tell on my kids. He freaks me out. But, hey, if he makes my kids act better during the month of December, than God Bless him. 

He loves to make the kiddos laugh each morning when they find him. 
His name is Mr. Candy-Cane. This is our 3rd year hosting him. 

Here is what he has done. And he gets most of his, no, ALL of his ideas from cleaver places like Pinterest and Instagram, although he isn't nearly as naughty as some of those other elves. 

(Do be advised that looking up #elfontheshelf on Instagram, can bring up some very Naughty Elves indeed!)

C.C. arrived the day after Thanksgiving with a note stating that it was TIME!

Blending in with the locals.

Uh, this was MAMA's Stash!!! 

Going fishing. 

Hanging out in the bathroom. 
No one would use that bathroom that day! See! 
I'm not the only one who thinks he is creepy! 

Toasting Marshmallows.

Playing cards.

Reading stories.

Making snow angels… in the sugar.

Bubble bathes.

Camping under the stars.

But now it's time to bid this little scamp good-bye for another year. 
So long C.C., 
So long…. 
And Merry Christmas!!!


The Gingerbread Project

Apparently our school makes gingerbread houses in the fourth grade. I received a paper with a recipe and instructions as well as a time line of when things should be brought to school and when they should be baked and cut and dried.

I never new that gingerbread had to dry for at least 2 weeks before you could make the house! Where on earth am I going to keep all this gingerbread!? And of course I doubled the recipe so I would have a house to make with the little ones while we are at the school, and maybe one to make with Grandma while she's here…. That's a lot of gingerbread!

Here is the recipe that school sent home.

I doubled the recipe and ran out of molasses!
Adventure Man saved the day by bringing me some
from the Lodge Kitchen
The Little Town School's Gingerbread

1/3 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar (packed)
1 1/2 cup dark molasses
2/3 cup cold water
7 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. allspice
1 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. cloves
1 tsp. cinnamon

Mix molasses, shortening and sugar thoroughly. Stir in water. Measure flour by dipping method or by sifting. Blend all ingredients, stir in. Chill. Divide dough in half.

(Mama's Notes: Measure the flour in a separate bowl and mix all the dry ingredients. Mix the dry ingredients a little at a time until it is too hard to mix with a mixer. Then turn it out to kneed in. Divide dough before chilling and wrap in plastic wrap. It's also helpful if you flatten each section before chilling so it's ready to roll once it's chilled.)

Heat oven to 350 F. Roll dough 1/4 inch think on 2 lightly greased cookie sheets. (15 1/2" x 12" is a good size for the cookie sheet to get the most use of the gingerbread.

Lulu, Bean, and Bear. Making their house at home.
It turned out scrumptious looking! 
Bake 10-12 minutes, or until no imprint remains when touched lightly. Cut the shapes while gingerbread is still warm. Cut as many rectangles and triangles as possible. Carefully remove from pan and place on a cooling rack. Keep as flat as possible while cooling to prevent pieces from curling. Gingerbread should get very hard.

1 batch should make 1 1/2 to 2 houses depending on sized of cookie sheets used.

(Mama's Notes: The templates that the school uses are for an A-frame house. They wanted just two triangles and two rectangles for each kid. That's fine, but for the house we did at home, I made four rectangles, the same length as the roof. They were only two inches tall, but it gave the feel of a regular house.)

They asked us to cut the pieces 6x6x7" for the triangle and 6x7" for the rectangles roof.

The Little Town School's Icing

1 lb. confectioners sugar
3 egg whites
3/4 tsp. cream of tarter

Beat with a mixer until smooth

Bunny and I were there too.
But I never got a picture of Grandma!
What was I thinking!



Dollhouse Diaries II

Today on the Dollhouse Diaries, Mom is getting the chores done. 

Dad's getting ready to help clean up by staring with his own hands.

Little Lucy is sweeping up the dining room while Baby Jimmy is trying to feed a carrot to the kitten.

Granny is looks like she's got a project going.

Here is the yard my daughter made for the family.
Complete with a toilet paper roll tree and a veggie patch. 

And last, Granddad seems to be indisposed! 

He doesn't seem to notice the camera!

The Dollhouse Diaries is brought to you by my daughter, Lulu, who loves to set up the dolls and even took all these pictures as well. 


A Thoughtful Gift

Adventure Man had to go out of town for a week. He's gone on business trips before, but never for a whole week. He was worried. About me. Or maybe he was more worried for the kids that I might just have to string them up by their toenails if they drive me to it. I don't know. But in his worrying, he came up with a wonderful plan.

He flew my Mom out to be with us while he was gone. She would keep me from going crazy in the woods with four kids. Or it would just be a fun Christmas gift to both her and me, and the kids! Who get to spend the week with Gramma!
Adventure Man getting Naked at the Beach.
Photo of himself. 

So really it's a Win Win! We all have a fun week while he is in Florida…

Oh wait, that was it! He knew I would be pissed that he was in Florida so I would be extra grumpy, irritable and most likely take it out on the kids, so Gramma is here, because that feels like a wonderful treat, until I think about him in the hotel on the beach in Florida….

No, really. What a wonderful thing to have my mom here all to myself and to have the extra hands with the kids. I couldn't have asked for a better Christmas gift.

…Unless it was to have left all the kids with Gramma and gone with Adventure Man to Florida…

No, no! It really does take two to get this crew off to the bus in the morning. I really don't know what I would do without Adventure Man, or my Mom for that matter!


Old Man Winter

Old Man Winter has been a tease this year. He has played with Autumn's emotions. At first I think she liked it. He surprised her by coming early and covering up her color at her most brilliant moment. But she didn't mind. It was stunning, she thought. Then he left just a quickly, leaving her feeling vulnerable. He reassured her by coming again.

But then when Autumn was worn and tired and had nothing else to offer us he seemed to forget that it was his moment to come to her rescue. He was enjoying the game too much, or perhaps has already lost interest.

Really it is Mother Nature herself who is toying with them and us. Using them like pawns on a chess board. But for what? To remind us that nothing is predictable. Nothing is permanent. No one has control. She brought on Winter's wrath and then melted him away leaving only mud and dead grass. Naked trees and bare mountains.

He has come again, today. Just a little. And not as much in town as here on the Mountain. Part of me is glad and hopes he will stay. But part of me has been grateful for the warm weather and lack of snow. To not feel the bite of winter when I go out, or too have to deal with the mess of it all.

Summer was not long enough for me.


Embracing the Camera While Trimming the Tree

Adventure Man took pictures of us trimming the tree. 
We decorated for the holidays right after Thanksgiving. 
I thought I would share. 

The question is whether or not she is helping or hindering? 

This was him saying, "Kris!" SO I looked up. Nice!

Dad made a yogurt shake to tide us over until dinner.

Bunny is getting sleepy and wants to play with Mama's hair.

Doesn't everyone have a Pink Panther Santa?

The Nutcrackers are ready to fight the mice!

And Super Santa is saying cheese! 

Happy Getting Ready For The Holidays, Y'all! 


My Month In Photos

I'm really bad at multi tasking. I'm way to ADD for that. I didn't get all my photos taken this month, but here's what I've got. I'm sure December will be even less, as I will be traveling. 

• something that starts with a "C"     • Color     • breakfast

• TV    • 5 o'clock    • a favorite thing (smiling) ~ I'm starting to think about elves…  • reflection ~ can you see my kid sitting on the couch in the hutch glass? 

• something I do everyday ~ check the temp.    • small ~ a small workout (ok, not for me!)    • something I can't live without ~ my water! it goes everywhere with me. Also the girl who stole my water!    • night ~ the night we went on a date only to find the theatre closed!

• a drink   • where I slept ~ well, the view from where I slept.   • Man made   • In your bag ~ it's preschool music class day! 

• the view from my window ~ two of them: the kitchen window is where I can see the construction on the septic and my bedroom window where my kids like to watch the annual deer eating of the halloween pumpkins. 

• the last thing I bought ~ I bought it to make a pie with, but ended up just buying a store bought pie later on! Now what to do with the pie pumpkin!    • something I wore ~ flour!   • black ~ the molasses for the ginger bread!   • sky ~ it was snowing, but the sun was shining? 

• grateful. 
I am grateful for family. 
The shells remind me of my dear sister-in-law who lives in Florida.
We collected these shells while visiting her there. 
Her husband has just been deployed again and so they have been on our mind a lot this Thanksgiving.

• in the cupboard ~ Mr Candy~Cane has come to stay again for the month! 

• tree
This 1st tree is over 900 years old, I'm told. It is located just a few miles from my home. The 2nd is on our christmas tree. It came with it's own decor! And the 3rd would be Mr. Candy~Cane again, up to his old tricks.

• vehicle  • Big (sky)   • on the wall ~ One of many pieces I have of my Grandmother's Red Cross memorabilia.

I'm sorry this is so late and I have neglected my Blog! But as I said, I am bad at multi tasking when I have company and want to do other things! Do bare with me this month. I am trying to get things scheduled before we go on vacation. And I promise I will be back together with everything come January! I may be gone, but I haven't forgotten you!