Friday, May 28, 2010

Graduation Plans/Potato Party

Olga requested a "Potato Party" for her graduation party and what that means is "as many potato dishes as possible",  plus all the toppings we can think of to go with it.  When  Olga, Russell and Eddie became a part of our family, "food" was our most traumatic experience.  The 3 kids were terrified of almost any food; even Russian food caused upset (the reasons why are a subject for another time)...but potatoes, ....they were in the safe zone, and even though their palettes have outgrown many of those fears by now, Potatoes are still a favorite.

Olga has often been heard to say "Potatoes are my life"  with her charming Russian accent.  So for our little Olechka who is now graduating from High School we are having; "Everything Potato" (well sort of) So here is the menu:

Potato Party Menu

Mashed Potatoes (Olga's favorite)
Potato Wedges (Olga's favorite)
Baked Potatoes (Olga's favorite)

Chili (Everbody else's favorite/not Olga's)
Ground Beef Stroganoff Gravy (Olga's favorite)
Chopped Ham (Olga's favorite)
Chopped Green Onion (Olga's favorite)
Shredded Cheddar Cheese (Everybody else's favorite)
Butter (a must for all)
Sour Cream (Everybody else's favorite)
Green Chilies (Everbody else's favorite)
Salsa (Everbody else's favorite)

Fresh Vegetable Platter

Fresh Strawberries
White Cake with Strawberry Filling (Olga's favorite)

Iced Tea with lemon

Here's the pictures/posted afterwards:
Note: Please disregard the date on these pictures; date on my camera is incorrect, and thus the dates do not correlate.   These pictures were taken 5/29/2010

We all had a great time... I think Olga was very pleased.   Check out that cute smile of hers.  Note the date on my pictures... 2 years off... what a crack up; I have a problem with getting my settings right on everything I think.    We also made a nice scrapbook board for Olga, didn't get a picture on this post...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Colorado Sand Dunes Field Trip

Last week, Eddie and I took a field trip to the Great Sand Dunes National Park.  His old school mates were all going on that particular day, so we decided we would meet up with them. I am not necessarily Eddie's first pick for a buddy to scramble up those dunes with; especially since I don't really "scramble" any more; its more like "I sit on the blanket in the warm sun, while he scrambles".  So it worked out nicely for both of us, that they picked the same day for the same field trip. (As you might have guessed, we actually planned our day around theirs).  We had a lovely time and brought along a soccer ball, a picnic and "Tobby Mack" our little dog.  The sand dunes are an interesting sight to see.  They are like a mini Sahara Desert right in the Rocky Mountains.  I am not sure how the "Evolutionists" try to explain them, but one possible explanation that we  "Creationists" have is that it is  remnants of "Noah's Flood".
If you click to enlarge the picture, you can see how big the dunes are compared to the little specks on them, which are people climbing up and down them.

We had a great time and even though our sunshine turned into cloudy skies, we were not held back in any way.  Eddie climbed to the second to the highest dune; I hiked over the creek and laid out the blank and kicked back with Toby.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sick as a Dog

What a crazy week it has  been.  We have all been sick except Eddie.  Olga started off on Tuesday sick as a dog and had finals to boot, so couldn't miss any school. Then she had "Life Guard" training, so she can get a life guarding job this summer; no options to miss much of that.  Then I  got sick; feeling worse than I have in years.  There has been so much to do and no time to be sick. Eddie and I went on a field trip on Tuesday to the Sand Dunes (more on that later). We have had a mad rush to get Eddies school year wrapped up, so we worked on all the subjects we had left; We had visitors scheduled for Saturday, and worked hard cleaning out and cleaning up to get ready for them; Friday night there was the soccer awards banquet for Olga, I barely got through the last half of that and by Saturday I was no use at all.

So here I am in bed.  It is Sunday morning and I would rather be in Church, but can't seem to move, my body just aches everywhere.  Steve has had it some too.  He didn't get it quite as bad as Olga and I thank goodness.  I have been pumping Eddie with homeopathics in hopes of keeping him well... so far so good.

 It always feels weird to be sick when the sun is shining so nice and warm, and the birds are singing outside, and the garden is wanting to be planted. I  feel better today than yesterday, so all the things I ought to be doing are calling to me.  Yesterday, I didn't care what needed doing (aside from the fact that I didn't get to go Eddie's game which would determine whether he would be in the play offs (his team did win and they will play the finals next weekend). They all had a great time and went to Dairy Queen afterwards.  I like those kind of things).

So I am a little behind.  I didn't get my project done for "52 weeks of..." although I got it started....does that count?  This week will be just as crazy as last, although hopefully and thankfully, without a flu bug to knock us down.  We have Olga's graduation the end of the week and our celebration for her, along with all the many things that go along with High school graduation.  Afterwards we will be able to catch our breath again.  I imagine I can get my project done some where in between all these things, and am hopeful not to miss another week.  Until next time,  Blessings to all.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Happy Birthday Asher

Happy Birthday To a very Special Grandson

Is this cute or what?  Our Grandson Asher is one year old today.  He is our second Grandson out of four.  He is our son Nathan and his wife Himilce's second.    He is such a sweet, easy going boy.  We miss him so much.  I wish we could all be there to celebrate this Happy Birthday. We will miss being at his number one birthday party. We will have a celebration with him and his cousins this summer when everyone comes for a visit.  Happy Birthday Asher. Grammy and Grampa miss you so much. We love you.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Napkin Rings/Week Nine

We don't have a beautiful table at every meal at our house, as a matter of fact it might be said that it is rarely that I set the table with anything more than practicality in mind, because most of the time I am pretty tired out by the time dinner comes along and want only to get it taken care of quickly and easily.  But with that in mind I  will say that for the average birthday party, holiday party, or just a happy get together of any sort, I always enjoy making a pretty table; my Mom was the same way, and always sets the  prettiest tables

I have developed a pattern that I adhere to when I am getting ready for company that has helped me not to stress out with excessive expectations that I have placed upon myself ( it is supposed to be a fun time after all, and guests don't enjoy themselves if their hostess is stressed out).  I clean my house the day before, and cook what ever I can a day or two before, and then the night before or morning of, I set the table. I do this part before going forth with the final preparations, because I enjoy it and have learned to look at it as a creative moment rather than just another part of the work.  All the while that I am doing these things I remind myself that this is the fun part, I don't need perfection and I won't rush about in irritation while doing it.  If I find myself getting nerved out over the preparations, I remember to pray, and get back into the peace of the Lord.  Then I enjoy my company and enjoy the creative part of the preparations.

One fun addition to a pretty table, is the napkin ring.  To me they are a little like jewelry to a table and add adornment to the setting. So as a final part of the little "tea party set", I have made a few napkin rings.  As I was making them I got a brainstorm for quite a few more ideas, so perhaps I'll post those in the future.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day Mom

Some pictures of Happy Memories and Years gone by.  There is my Mom in her younger days and my Dad as well, I am the little girl in the pictures along with my two brothers.  In the second to the bottom picture, is my 2 grandpas and one grandma; the other grandma is taking the picture.
When I was a little girl my family lived in Europe and Wales for several years of my life.  That experience added to a part of our family personality, and instilled in us all a desire to see and experience different places in the world.  I have a memory of my pretty mom in all those places and am thankful for the happy family memories I have. My Mom is almost 75 years old now and lives near my brother Dave and his family.  For years, she lived almost next door to us on our property.  We loved having her here with us and are thankful that we had her for the time we did.  We miss her.
Happy Mothers Day Mom
You have always believed in me, and that has meant so much to me.
Thank you for the happy memories growing up and for all your love.
I love you

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Good Mothers

"A good mother is worth hundreds of schoolmasters"

George Herbert

One of my favorite books is a book by Anna Perot Rose written in the 1940's.  It is a story
about a family who cared for foster children during the 30's.  It is sweet, funny and full of old fashioned parenting wisdom.  I would love to share the whole book with you.  Here is a little excerpt just for fun.  The lesson from this little excerpt is a good reminder to us all. It is better to teach our children how to overcome obstacles and learn, than to teach them to simply hide from struggle or danger".  As mother's it is instinctive for us to protect our children from harm; it is a God given quality; but to teach our children to see past past fear is wisdom from God, one that we should all aspire to.

Enjoy an Excerpt from the classic book "Room for One More" by Anna Perot Rose

"...I discovered then the kind of person children like. A child feels helpless in this world and likes the kind of person who makes him feel able, clever and competent. He returns oftenest to that person who recharges his mental battery for him. I tried not to fail him.

We went straight home. I undressed him, took off the weight of his braces and put him into a microscopic pair of bathing trunks. All of us got into bathing suits and went gaily to the beach.

But, when I carried Jimmy John down to the edge of the water he took one look at the Atlantic Ocean and flung his arms around my neck, nearly strangling me and screeched, "Don't take me in dere! I'm skeert to deat'! Dat place's bigger'n de Y pool and de Y pool is too d*** big for me!"

I put him down safely on the sand and the rest of us went into the surf. He watched us having a good time. When I came out he called to me, "Take me in, maybe I get over bein so skeert to deat'".

I took him in, but he saw a wave coming at us. "Git me outa here! Git me outa here quick!" he screamed. "I'm skeert to deat'!"

We came out.

Pretty soon, "Take me in again. I'm skeert, but I'll go."

In and out, in and out, we went for weeks-the "ins" gradually growing longer than the "outs". J.J. grew braver and braver and by the end of the summer he could actually swim a little.

He was very proud, but very quiet about his triumph. One day, he sat on the beach watching a woman with her child.

"Junior, come back. You'll drown!" this woman would shriek.

"Junior if you get in that water, the fishes will eat you up and you won't see Mama no more!"

"You Junior, come here, the waves'll carry you way out to the middle of the ocean and the whales'll swallow you and you won't have no mama out there."

This went on for some time. At last Jimmy John spoke: " Dat woman's a bad mudder," he said with deep disapproval.

"She keeps sayin 'look out, the ocean'll drown youse!" She orta say "Git in der and swim and don't be a sissy.' Dat's what you say to me."

He was thoughtfully silent for a breath then, " You're a good mudder," said he."

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Russell Graduates from Boot Camp

Russ is the second one from the front with the white flag

Russ graduated from Navy Boot Camp last Friday.  Steve and I got to be there.  We have 2 Navy boys now; our son-in-law Benjamin being the first and then Russ.  It stirs up your heart to be able to be at the Navy boot camp graduation.  It is an amazing reminder that there are still thousands of great things about our country.  I feel a sense of pride and love for our military who have sacrificed and are sacrificing so much for our country.

Russ with Steve

Russ and I 

We had lunch at Chili's for one of those hamburgers that Russ loves

We got two blessings during our trip to "Great Lakes", One of course was to be there with Russ, and the other was; 3 more of our precious clan drove over from Ohio and joined us.  We enjoyed almost 2 days with Jon, Marie and baby Zane. What a time we had.  We hugged, talked, laughed,  ate, walked on the beach of Lake Michigan and celebrated Jon's Birthday and Mother's Day (it was all like one long Mother's Day Celebration to me.)

Precious threesome

Little Zane

Uncle Russ and baby Zane

Jon and Marie and baby drove back to Ohio Saturday night and Steve and I flew back home on Sunday. Russ returned to the Navy base, and will fly out some time this week to Pensacola to begin his training.

Life of course is always waiting; school at home with Eddie, soccer with Olga and Eddie, Olga's fund raiser band concert, and of course there is always the laundry, all of which swallowed us up almost as soon as we got home ( I was glad to hear that Grandma Jo was worn out from hauling kids around in our sted...not glad that she was worn out I should say, but that I haven't just imagined that Steve and I are worn out from running so much lol).


The next little project for the tea set is of course the napkins.  There does not need to be a hard and fast rule as to the size of a cloth napkin.  To make mine, I pulled out a few of my other cloth napkins to see if I wanted to use them as my measurement example.  I decided I wanted mine a couple of inches smaller on each side since they were tea napkins.    I cut them at 13x13.  I then ironed and sewed the hem.  Quick and easy.