Tuesday, May 31, 2011


So when you're a teacher and a coach, you tend to have a lot of graduation parties to attend.  And since I hate doing the standard card and money, here are a few of the things we've decided to do...

Curly Girl jars.  If you don't yet know about Curly Girl, you NEED to.  Go here!  They have the cutest, funnest, most inspiring 'stuff'!  I have 6 volleyball girls from my old team who are seniors.  So, I ordered 6 jars that said "she packed up all her potential and all she had known, grabbed a cute pair of shoes and headed out to change a few things".  Then I filled them with quarters.  Who doesn't need quarters for laundry when they're in college??  I think it's safe to say they loved them when we all met up for dinner on Friday night!

Jewelry Box.  Jon made this for his cousin who is graduating from high school this year.  He also had made a slightly bigger 'memory' box for my cousin who graduated from college a few years ago.  We certainly don't do this for every grad, but he does some AMAZING work.

Yep, he's a handy guy to keep around ;)  He also had his first sale in his Etsy shop this past week -- woohoo hubs!  If you want to check it out, you can find it HERE!

What about you guys?  Any great graduation presents you've done?  I'm always searching for something new and original!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Cinnamon Chip Scones

Do you like scones?  Yes.  Ok, make these right now.  Ready...go.  Seriously, these are some of the best scones I've ever eaten (or made) in my life.  It all started a few weeks ago when I wanted to have scones at the baby shower I was hosting (see details here).  I know of a few good places that sell them, but because I'm 'frugal' *ahem* cheap, I decided to see if I couldn't whip some up myself.  I started with this recipe...and made a few small additions to make them irresistible.

 Cinnamon Chip Scones
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon baking soda
4 cups flour
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
1 egg
Splash milk
1 cup cinnamon chips (or other "mix-ins" - I used dried cherries and pecans)
1 tablespoon milk
2 tablespoons 'raw' sugar

[one] Combine sour cream and baking soda in a bowl.  Set aside.

[two] Mix baking soda through salt with a whisk.  Cut in butter.  Then, add egg and sour cream mixture.  Add enough milk to help dough combine.  
hello baby bump!
[three] Set oven to 350 and grease 2-3 cookie sheets.

[four] Flour work surface and hands.  Get out 1/3 of dough and knead lightly.  Then, shape into a circle about 3/4" thick.  Cut into triangles.  Place on cookie sheets.  Brush with milk and then sprinkle raw sugar on top.

[five] Bake for 10-15 minutes (depending on size) or until the bottom is golden brown.  

These things are seriously great....perfect for a Memorial Day weekend...or to trade for staying at friend's house like we're doing tomorrow :)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday

It has been a crazy week.  I've been subbing on my usual afternoons off, enjoying being outdoors, taking Whit on lots of walks, and getting kicked in the belly every day around lunch time by our precious little Liza :)  Let me tell you I can't wait for the weekend.  But here's what I'm loving today:

That the weather is finally shaping up and has led to lots of time spent on the patio and outdoors in general.

Early morning walks with my momma.  We just started this week, but we're trying to get on a 2-3 walks a week schedule.  5:40AM is not my favorite time, but getting up and moving around feels great!
We have a long weekend -- hooray for Memorial Day!  We're heading downstate to see some of my old vball girls and then to Jon's cousins' graduation parties.  It should be a fun trip!
The wonderful friend we have up here.  We're truly blessed to get to hang out with such fun, loving, energizing people.
As always, my amazing husband.  He is so loving and generous...especially when we do things like take my nephew fishing :)

And of course, the Whit-bug too.  We've spent some quality time going on walks this week!  Even at 10, she's still cruising around the neighborhood :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Boo-man's Birthday

So last week we celebrated my nephew, Braden's 2nd birthday.  It was a crazy, noisy, fun celebration to say the least.  It seems like whenever you get Braden and Mason together with their cousins, things get noisy!  But they always have such a good time together :)

Warning: this post is photo heavy...but quite frankly these guys are too cute not to include lots of pics :)
Here's the birthday boy with his big balloon and new hat from Deb!
 Then, the birthday boy trying to figure out the whole party hat thing...
 Charlie, Ellie and Mason being silly!
 Braden's cake -- Little Einsteins, his favorite tv show.
 This is what he looked like when we started singing happy birthday.
 It soon changed to this big ole grin!
 Blowing out the candles the first time (we usually do it 3-4 times around here).
 Admiring a present from Grandma Carla and Poppa Bill!
Then, it was time to head outside and have pinata time!  His Aunt Jenni made the Little Einsteins pinata!
 The "poppas" watching while the pinata action was going down.
 My sister-in-law and her mom and sister!
 JW and I -- whoa baby bump!
 And one last one of the birthday boy!
 As always, we feel so blessed that we get to hang out with the kiddos so frequently and be around for birthday parties and everything else :)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Hello Summer!

Two words: Awesome weekend.  

Here's how it started:
Gorgeous day.  Bbq at our house.  Kind of a last minute plan.  Whole family comes over.  Nephews play on Uncle Jon's boat. Eat summer-time dinner.  Friends join later.  Puppy party in the backyard.  Play frisbee.  Throw tennis balls.  Run.  Have fun.  Bonfire.

Gorgeous day.  Go to cottage.  OPENING WEEKEND.  Do a little cleaning.  Play with nephews.  Whit goes swimming.  Loves it.  Decide to go fishing.  Head into town.  Pick up boat.  Take Mason out fishing on Pickerel Lake.  Mase turns his hat backwards because "that's what Uncle Jon does".  Motor stops working.  Jon fixes!  Catch two pike.  Too small to keep but in the words of Mase "that was awesome".  Pizza at my parents with the nephews.  Movie and early bedtime.

Gorgeous day.  Get up early.  Plant garden.  Relax in new patio furniture.  Start moving cabinets for mudroom and hutch inside.  Relax while a warm breeze blows.  Love life.  Watch fog literally blow in.  Realize that happens when you live off of Lake Michigan.  Feel temperature drop 15 degrees.  Decide we'll work inside the rest of the day.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday

My loves...

That my sweet nephew and Godson Braden turns 2 today!  Happy birthday Boo!

That we only have 15 full days of school left!  The kiddos are getting antsy and so is their teacher!

That we are spending some of the weekend at the cottage.  Opening weekend is the best.  It's more of a sign that summer is here/coming and lazy weekends, time with family, boating, swimming, lots of bon fires, and great food are just around the corner.

That I'm starting to get more energy back and can actually stay up till 9:30 or even 10.  Hello second trimester!  I finally feel a little more like my old self :)

As always, my amazing husband, Jon and the Whit-bug.