Friday, December 18, 2009

Mild Winter

My favorite Christmas present of all time. When Joseph started preschool, one of the aspects I was excited about was the handmade presents for the moms. I have received two or three items with his handprint, but this little tree was wrapped, and framed with a beautiful teal and orange color pairing. I absolutely adore it.

Wanted to share this yummy smoothie. It's called Banana Nut Winter Smoothie. The recipe calls for vanilla yogurt, but I love using plain yogurt with honey added for sweetness. Plain yogurt just has a tang.
And when freezing your bananas, take the peel off first. In case you can't read the recipe, here it is:
1 frozen banana
1 cup vanilla or plain yogurt
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (love this part)
1 tsp honey (optional)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
Blend in a blender!

Holiday baking and festivities begin next week, and I am very excited. Plus, I am contemplating tackling this Jolly Elves craft, but I will probably flake out. It would mean buying a hot glue gun, because I don't have one. I found the idea at WHATEVER, which is a blog that I go to daily, and she has lots of fun holiday activities to do with kids. Although her kids are older than mine and most of my peers, her blog is oozing inspiration.

Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, December 4, 2009


I just noticed that the date of my last entry was November 18, I didn't want to go that long without posting. But working the holiday, family functions and organizing the preschool Christmas party kept me occupied.

I feel a sense of relief now that the Christmas party is over. I had fun preparing for it, but planning it was a little stressful. I wasn't quite sure what was required of me - a lot of trial by fire. I was afraid the other Language Lane families would come after me with pitchforks and sickles if Santa didn't show, or if the ballons were flat by the time of the party, or if 400 candy canes weren't enough, or if Santa didn't have a real beard. But whew, rest assured that everything went fine.

Here are some pictures from that night.

David came in the middle of his shift to watch. Here, Joe is watching the older class.

Mr. and Mrs Claus were awesome. They enjoying dining at Cheeseburger in Paradise, so I gifted them with a gift card as a thank you.

I had to coax Joe off of Santa's lap he was loving it.

Now it's time for oven pizza and watching my favorite Christmas movie: ELF!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Angel Sugar Cookies Rock

Totally snarfing on PW's Angel Sugar Cookies. I have eaten too, too many, please send help. Oh wait I don't need help, someone has sent an angel. An angel in Thomas the Train couture and a teal tutu.
I might be experimenting with uploading photos on the blog. So do not be alarmed with the crazy proportions.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Representing KC

A total surprise to me, Monday morning my husband vaguely suggests that I find a babysitter. I am thinking oh yeah right, because we rarely go anywhere and with Dave Ramsey in our lives, it is sacrilege to spend money.

An hour later he proclaims that two tickets will be waiting at the front entrance to the Unity Temple to see P-Dub. I have been a devoted reader of Confessions of a Pioneer Woman for over a year. Have you all read Black Heels to Tractor Heels? I stumbled upon that the first day I found her blog and spent the next 48 hours glued to the computer screen.

Why the scowl Ryanne? Well, I was trying to be silly, because I knew David was trying to take a picture, but I felt really bad for this girl standing in line next to me who forgot her camera. Oh wait, that wasn't some girl, that was me. I freaking forgot my camera. I never do anything like this and I forgot the dadgum camera. So all of these pics were taken with Dave's camera phone.

Did you know that Ree's cookbook hit the New York Time's best seller list? Well, you do now! This fuzzy snapshot was taken at about 11:35 at night. We were one of the last fifteen people there. Poor Ree, she had had another signing that day, and I know she had to be exhausted. But she kept right on trucking like a pro. I had hoped to stand out, and that she would remark how clever and witty I was, and ask to read my charming blog. But I think she probably thought I was crazy, because I proceeded to tell her that I cook from her blog probably 3-4 times a week, read it daily and sometimes it is pulled up on the computer all day, which is really just me either cooking all day, making a grocery list, and/or reviewing future recipes.
Anyway, we had such a relaxing/fun night. After Ree's interview with Vivenne from Rainy Day books, David and I went to dinner because it was several hours before my number would be called for the signing. And it was fun to watch Marlboro Man and their two boys at the signing. Her boys were a tad bit rambunctious, but they were just being boys, and I loved it because it just made her more real and down to earth.
I am now wondering if I should just take my camera everywhere with me, like I take my phone or my wallet...dum dum dum

Monday, November 16, 2009

in 2008

I snapped this photo one year ago today - it is Charlotte with my sister Shelbe.
Today, on this date in 2009, David and I are going to see Pioneer Woman! I can't wait. Oh yeah, and I get her new cookbook. Can't wait for that either! Now I need to go wash my hair and shower so I don't stink when I meet Ree. I think I am going to wear my cowboy boots, and borrow a trendy sweater from my sister.

Friday, November 6, 2009


Today was as beautiful inside as it was outside. Do you know those days where you don't have a care in the world? Well, my day wasn't carefree, but my worries were "in check" if you will, and I was semi-productive. David had FOP meetings through the day so it was just me and the chittlins. I scurried to Wally world before David left for his meetings, just to get diapers, cat food, and some of the cheaper dry goods vs. say cereal at the grocery store where the price is hiked up $2-3. I bought the kids a cinnamon roll and bear claw, something I do about 3-4 times a year. Came home, fed them breakfast, everyone got dressed and headed to the Y, where I take my kickboxing class, that I absolutely love, and really deserves it's own post one day.
Talk about a total body workout, that is as fun as it is good for you. Sometimes I think Cindy, the instructor picks on me, she really pushes me. Today over her microphone she commented, "somebody came to work hard today", and I did! I was punching the bag across the room, and my arms were on fire.
After kickboxing, I treated the kids at the coffee shop. I only go to the coffee shop on the days that David works all day and it is just me and the kids. I justify needing the caffeine, and Joe really loves sitting on the stool at the bar. Joe likes the Italian soda and I usually partake in the Blushing Zebra.
We took our treats to the grocery store, where the kids were so good. Joe just walked along with the cart and Charlotte sitting inside. Of course, he was handsy, but I tried to keep him busy looking for items on the list. Then I locked my keys and the kids in the car, had a brief, "oh my Lord" moment then Joseph willingly climbed to the front of the car, and unlocked it.
We came home, fixed turkey sandwiches, and I labored over a pot roast. David came home early from his meetings, which was a nice surprise. I folded some laundry, started packing a suitcase, because the kids and I are staying at my mom's tonight, so she can watch the kids tomorrow while David and I work.
The kids went down for naps. David and I snoozed in the chair and couch, respectively, and I elevated my left foot. My heel hurts like the dickens. The pain is a cross between a bruise feeling and a burn. Does anyone know what this might be? Is it plantar fascitis (help with spelling)?
Now I need to finish packing up the car, and the kids. The pot roast smells awesome through the house. Since being on the Total Money Makeover, I haven't bought any candles. I have found myself baking and cooking to make the house smell good. Pot roast canlde anyone?
Anyway, today was just one of those perfect days. Life is good! Then I work tomorrow...hehehehe!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


I don't know if I can remember everything we've been doing but I do know that about 8:30 every night I am pretty tired.
Here we are at Kerby Farms pumpkin patch for the preschool Fall party.

Language Lane was supposed to have a costume party down the main street in Bonner, but it rained the whole day. So they improvised and held other activities at the school. The program and parade were sweet and charming none the less.

Joseph taking his turn and telling everyone he was a "police oppicer"

Patiently waiting for a cookie.

Eating a cookie. Do you find my narration helpful?

The future chicken coop. To be expanded upon at a later date.

David and I have started the Dave Ramsey Total Money Makeover, and have been at it about a month and a half. Although it seems longer. So Christmas shopping, and the holiday season ought to be fun this year. This year I might actually budget and follow a plan more closely. I refuse to "get behind" this year because of Christmas. The pressure to spend and give useless gifts is unbelievable and ruins Christmas for me. I always feel so guilty. Arghhhhhhhhhhh. But not this year. It's going to be simple. Right, simple?

MIA on Halloween

This year I worked Halloween. Of course I didn't want to work, but neither did the twenty other mom's who worked Halloween, so I didn't attempt to take PTO. Luckily David took off the day, and was able to participate in the festivities.

Now, I am almost didn't want to post about Halloween. I had a costume for Charlotte, that a friend loaned me and used for her little girl a two years ago. Well, being the organized mom that you all know I am, I never put the costume on Charlotte until Halloween night. Surprise, surprise, the costume didn't fit, as evidenced by the pictures below. So to appease me, David poured Charlotte into the jumpsuit for picture sake, but obviously wouldn't keep her in it all night. The poor guy called me at work to warn me that it didn't fit, and she wouldn't be able to wear it. She is supposed to be a prisoner.

And Joseph is a cop. I have never seen such a happy policeman. By the way, I must give credit where credit is due. The big brother/cop and little sister/inmate costumes and idea were Josie O's idea. I am just a copycat.

Now this picture breaks my heart, because I wasted a perfect opportunity and once in a lifetime chance to do something cute with Charlotte. She will never be this age again. She looks so pitiful in the background at the door watching her brother enjoy the Halloween night and the attention. Meanwhile she stares longingly outside. One day she will look at this picture and think, my mama didn't love me.

Look at the small pumpkin. I botched cutting the top off and decided to make him into a pirate. Are you jealous of my creativity? Yup, I thought so.

So Sowwy...

I want to apologize to anyone who still reads this blog. I want to say I am sorry, sorry for leaving up a picture of Kraft macaroni cheese for as long as I did. When I posted that silly post, I thought to myself, oh it won't be up that long, I'll post something cute of the kids later today or maybe the next. But oh no, I think it has been a week now. So right after I pop some kettle korn and pick Joe up from preschool, I will come back and post something else. Anything but mac n'n cheese.

Monday, October 26, 2009

the Health Conscious Mother

I felt guilty about eating Kraft macaroni and cheese. So being the health focused (or lazy, you choose) mother that I am, I added chopped raw spinach. Get out your recipe cards!

Friday, October 23, 2009


Obviously, these pictures were not taken today, today was too cold, windy and wet, but about two to three weeks ago. Since then Charlotte has started walking. I purposefully took these of her outside because a) for once she didn't have food in her hair b) I have only half the pictures of her that I have of Joe, and she is growing soooo fast. She is sweet, loving, affectionate, assertive, sassy, innocently ornery and loves her mom, dad and big brother.

70% of the time it is entertaining to watch them play together. Really, Joseph plays in an organized manner and Charlotte mimics and plays around Joseph. Surprisingly, the majority of the time Joseph takes the initiative and includes her in his play and/or narrates for her, explaining what he is doing. Oh yeah, the other 30% of playtime, he is taking away whatever toy she is playing with, and she starts squawking and raising a raucous.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pumpkin Eater

In the midst of my pumpkin cooking frenzy this morning, Joseph calls me outside to look at the leaf he found in the yard. I just thought this picture was funny.
The real reason I am posting is because I want to share my new favorite cooking or baking blog. Has anyone visited Joy the Baker?

I have always thought Kettle Korn was a big mystery and could only be eaten at carnivals, ball games and the City Market. Well, not any more my friends. Joy has shown me the way to homemade Kettle Korn and it is tried and true.
These here heavenly pumpkin spice pancakes are to die for. I finally made them this morning, and I was not disappointed. I even made two batches, which I usually do not do.
I don't know if she goes into homemade whip cream. Probably somewhere on her site, but I haven't found it. But just a quick tutorial for those of you who have never made it and want to give it a go.
Homemade whipping cream
1cup of heavy whipping cream
1-3tablespoons of white sugar (depending on how sweet you like it)
Beat on a high speed with a whisking attachment for about 5 minutes, until stiff peaks start to form. Now, you can spice up your cream, add some vanilla extract, or I have used cinnamon, and I have used pupmkin pie spice. David really liked the pumpkin spice cream, but lately I have just opted for 1 tablespoon of sugar - just enough to lightly sweeten.
So check out Joy's blog. I think she'll have lots of holiday inspiration.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

No Half Assin'

My goal over the last 3 1/2 months has come and gone. It was so much better than I prepared myself for. When I say better, I mean I ran better than I thought I could, the pain wasn't quite as bad as I thought, and it was just plain fun. I smiled miles 0-12, but after mile 12 there was no smiling. How can you slow down in the last mile? My official time was 2:19:34, but I promise you, that I waited in the mile 4 port-a-potty line for at least 7 minutes. Anyway, in my previous post I stated that this would be my last half marathon - scratch that. I love hearing the national anthem. I want to thank my Mom for letting me borrow her running pants, and Josie for letting me borrow her pink dry fit shirt and ear warmer. The pink and black made me feel sassy.

Fussing with my ipod. I attach it to my sports bra and tuck the wires so that they don't pull.

I was running.

David said the sweetest thing, after I saw my average mile time, I was briefly disappointed, he told me, "well, I thought you looked fast" in a very convincing manner.

Skip to after the finish. At this point, I remembering thinking, I can't believe I just ran 13.1 miles.

My Mom and sisters met me at several different points along the course to cheer me on, and my Mom ran with me several times. It was such a motivator. My sisters can be so loud.

David was awesome, he met me at several different spots too. It was kind of weird, because I would just be running along, and every time I saw him, he was just right there. He always seemed to put himself in a good place.

My medal. I wore it most of the day. It felt so good to set a goal and finish. You know, other than human reproduction!

Next up PsychoWyco!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Squeaky Knees and Squeaky Shoes

Still no pictures. David is holding the camera hostage. So, just ramblings. In two days, a little over 48 hours I will be in the midsts of running my first and last half-marathon. I am not sure my knees will be up for any more 13 mile challenges after this one. In fact, I conferenced with my knees tonight in a hot bath, and while they are not sore at this very moment, they are petrified of feeling petrified in the middle of the race. All joking and knee jerking aside, while I am nervous about knee pain during the race (it's more like a run for me, rather than a race), it feels so good to have set a goal over 3 months ago, busted my butt running and exercising, and to be on the verge of completion. Other than reproducing and carrying babies, it has been a long time since I have followed through with anything. And well, the babies, I really couldn't just quit in the middle.

Speaking of babies, my little Charlotte is walking. And, walking a lot. She loves it. She especially loves to wear her squeaky shoes. Josie, she fussed and cried at me tonight when I took them off. Hee-larious!

So, I am excited, just a wee bit scared. But hopefully my Friday night dinner/carb load at Garozzo's along with a glass or two or three of red wine will numb my wits and relax me. Here's to hoping.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Blah, Blah, Blah

I am sure I have used this title before - for a post where I make tons of excuses for not posting. I am holding up my left hand in the shape of an L right now. Between working extra, I worked a sixty hour week two weeks ago, training for my half-marathon (which has slackened), making time for family, trying to clean (sort-of), and trying to go to bed earlier no matter what the house looks like, preschool activities, and carting the kids around town so that I can work more, blogging has fallen by the wayside. But yesterday I baked something and took pictures, so that I could share it with fellow pumpkin eaters. And today I took some pics of the kids playing outside, because they were just too cute playing side by side. So please bare with my unorganized soul and do not abandon the Dotte, for I will post something decent soon.

Friday, September 18, 2009

"We Gotta Go Downtown"

"We gotta go downtown" is what Joe kept repeating this morning as we scurried out the door at a last moments notice to pick up his new glasses.
But answer one question, how does a three year old know that these are the right glasses for his eyes? And how will he articulate that to his mother?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Language Lane

All aboard. Destination: Language Lane preschool.
There are two important characters in this picture (besides Joseph). The little girl standing next to Joe is his friend Caitlyn. Joe talks about Caitlyn every time we talk about preschool. At first I thought Caitlyn was kind of, well, made up. Joe has a cousin named Caitlyn, and of course I figured there was a Caitlyn in his class like he talked about, but I figured he just latched on to a familiar name. Apparently, I was mistaken. Caitlyn and Joseph are good buddies. In fact, Caitlyn talks about Joe quite often at home as well. How stinkin' hilarious is that?!?
So, who is the sassy chick in the frayed jeans, pink shirt and hip swayed to one side? Well, Nana of course.

For Grandparents Day, Nana, and other grandparents were serenaded by the preschools, and enjoyed storytime together. Each preschooler then provided their grandparents with personal tours around the classroom (cush with cookies and beverages), with emphasis on their favorite activities.
I just love Joe's preschool. I feel like it is a hidden treasure in Bonner Springs. I wish school could always be like Language Lane and Noble Prentis (my elementary alma mater).

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

the One Year Old

Prior to Charlotte's arrival, I was apprehensive about raising a little girl. I don't know how to apply make-up, I can style my hair - into a ponytail. I wear jeans, t-shirts, and oh yeah sweatshirts. Let's not forget my ultra stylish, trendy and feminine Converse All-Stars. I'm just not girly. But, dad-gum-it, the girl was meant to be mine. She knows that I am mama. She will start to repeat: ma-ma-ma-ma-ma and fiendishly crawl towards me, then stand up with arms in the air begging to be carried. When I enter the room, she sqwuaks/screams (how do you spell sqwuack?) and then will drop what she is doing and bee-line straight towards me. Two words to describe her: sweet, but demanding. Do sweet and demanding = spoiled? Not by this ma-ma-ma-ma-ma.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Finally, the Finish

It has taken forever, but here are pictures from the finish line. Even though he is smiling, I imagine it was difficult to walk up the hill.

They look like best buddies. Team 1060 took over 82 hours to complete the Missouri River 340. Not too shabby considering over 1/3 of the entrants do not finish. And they are already looking forward to next year!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

the Passed Out Preschooler

Again, sorry for the lack of posts. Exercise and training have become a bit of an obsession right now. Sweating has become a drug. I need to sweat daily to feel good. And, when I say sweat, I mean buckets. There is no glowing and/or glistening here, it is full on saturation. But this post isn't about me, it is about my sweet and often ornery preschooler.

Joseph's first day of pre-school was today. I have been anticipating this day for about a year now, and it has arrived. Crazy how time flies. I won't say much else. Just that Joe's teacher said he had a great day, and that he is a really fun kid. She told me at one point Joe exclaimed, "pre-school is awesome!"

Ummm, Mom why are you taking my picture while I am staring into the sun? Poor guy...

This is about an hour after arriving home. I tried to forgo his nap, hoping for an early and easier bedtime, but the poor chittlin' is exhausted. I still think he will sleep like a rock tonight.

Here's to a second childhood, and enjoying every minute! Nap time included.