Saturday, October 30, 2010

Independent little mama!





****If you still can't get anything when you click on the video, try this link and see what happens.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Big Boo Rama

Raegan and I went to the trick-or-treating event downtown this afternoon. Zane opted to go to the skating party for sixth graders (can't go to a dance until next year - thank God!), so it was some fun mommy-daughter time for us girls! Zane got some candy that he didn't even have to work for, and there were a few bags of teddy grahams in there, so Raegan even gets something! :)

It was hard to buckle her in her carseat with all of the fluff at the bottom of her costume!


So happy to stop by and see Granny at work!


Unimpressed Raegan


This not for my head - this is for chewing!!


Raegan was a bit skeptical of actually getting to take candy....


but when she realized what it was, it was a different story! (I didn't let her eat it, but holding it kept her happy. Don't judge me! lol)


Ooooh, now what am I getting?!


I'm done! Take me home Mama!!!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Footies!

 Raegan is 14 months old today. How time flies!

Footies!

Worn out after a FUN day with Granny!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

My sides, they hurt!

You may notice that I've added a sidebar on the right side of my blog, that lists the most recent entry to the blogs I like to read the most. I'm going to be adding a new one that I found tonight, because it is absolutely hysterical. Like, I-can't-drink-anything-while-I-read-it-because-I'll-totally-end-up-spraying-it-all-over-my-computer-hysterical. In particular, check out this post about trying to juggle everything and be an adult. (There is some swearing, if that bothers you.)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Give me my privacy!

Raegan loves shutting herself in her room to play (or get into things she shouldn't be!) It used to be that if she shut herself in she would cry because she didn't like being alone, but now she loooooves it. Preview of years to come perhaps? :)


video

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Zane's fall conference

Zane's parent teacher conference went very well tonight. Middle school is a lot different that elementary school, because he has 8 teachers now instead of just one (plus specials and reading) so I wasn't really sure how the conference would go. The teacher that's assigned to do conferences with us is Zane's social studies teacher. It's kind of strange that he talks about the other classes too, because he knew about the subject matter but wasn't always sure what the assignments in the folders meant, but it worked fine. I would rather not have to go around to 8 different teachers, I'll tell you that!

Mr. E. told us multiple times that Zane is very organized in his class. Woo hoo! After such a struggle last year to get him to turn things in, he appears to be doing much better. Well, not in art, where he had multiple NHIs (Not Handed In), but in the other 7 subjects yes. Luke and I both feel (and I think Zane's mom does too based on what she was saying to Zane) that it's a bit ridiculous that Zane has a B because of not handing in his work in an elective that he chose to take. If it were a B based on his work, fine. But in looking at his grades on assignments, it appears that his B is solely because he had maaaaaany assignments he didn't hand in. We've always told Zane we expect A's and B's because he is intelligent and perfectly capable of that. :)

So Zane has 6 A's and two B's. And two of those A's were 100%, and another was a 99%!!!! Awesome! So far, middle school seems to be going well for him, and we are very proud of him!!!!!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Shenanigans!

This is what Raegan thinks of our baby proofing attempts


Raegan has gotten in the habit of shutting herself in her room and playing. (Preview of her emo pre-teen years.) This is what I found when I checked on her this afternoon.

I think we are going to have our hands full. :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Pumpkin Patch pictures!

We had a lot of fun at the pumpkin patch today. I think Luke may have even enjoyed himself too, thanks to the lack of crowds because we went early. The owner told us that this is their busiest weekend, and yesterday they had about 1600 people there. Good Lord! We got there right at 11:00 when they opened, and there were only 4 other families there. By the time we left it was a little busier, but still not bad.

Chillin' out in the hay bale mini maze

Raegan wasn't really sure what to think of the cow
I can help you play Dada!

Zane never did get the hole in one he wanted. :(
My little punkin
Head first for the big kids!
Silly brother
Luke only let her slide by herself from halfway down, but she still went really fast. She LOVED it!

Raegan's seesaw experience went a LOT better than mine did as a kid. Right, mom?
Zane said it was hard to be the only one pushing the seesaw up and down.

Zane has no idea what lies ahead for him in the corn maze. (It took us a loooong time to get through, because we were determined to find all six hole punch stations.)

We ended up using the stroller for most of the maze.
Corn!
Zane buried Raegan. When we got her out of there, she had a bunch of corn coming out of her pants legs. :)
You want me to SIT on this?!?!

Okay, enough Mama!

My two cuties!
There was so much going on, we never really could get Raegan to look at the camera.
Oooh, I like this little one!

It was a great day at the Pumpkin Patch!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

New things every day.

First up, I just want to mention that these cookies that I blogged about baking a couple days ago are not that good. They're adorable, but the cookie is a little bland. I think they would be a lot better if I made the cookies from scratch instead of a cake mix. Just felt like I had to point this out, so that no one made them on my recommendation. lol

Alright, on to Raegan. Her language is just expanding by leaps and bounds. She now says "uh oh" (but it still comes out more of a "uh uh" when she drops things, or does something that needs an "uh oh". She has said "tee tee" when she's seen Radar several times now, and my mom swears she said something that sounded like "dayz" when she saw Daisy today. Mom, we are working on "Granny", I promise! :) Raegan loves to go to the top of the stairs when Luke is downstairs and yell, "Hey! Dada!" down until he yells back up at her. She doesn't do this hardly at all for Zane and I, but almost every time Luke goes downstairs. I'm hoping that she either learns the sign for more or learns to say more soon, because the whining for food is increasing quite a bit.

Speaking of which, it seems like Raegan eats constantly! She's still a very healthy eater, preferring fruits and veggies to meat. I told my mom today I thought maybe that's why she needs to eat so frequently - she doesn't eat foods that are very filling. Refried beans and cheese on a tortilla are still her number one favorite food, closely followed by ANY fruit. People are always so surprised when I tell them Raegan likes foods like olives and beans and salsa. Yay for a non-picky eater!

Raegan is walking a lot - she can do up to 9 or 10 steps at a time now. She's even turned and headed a different direction in mid walk before. She'll still drop down to the ground if it's taking her too long to get where she wants, but she's not falling down nearly as much.

As for Zane, he finished his fall soccer season today. It seems like that season went by really quickly, but it was 6 weeks just like they've always been. We weren't too impressed with his soccer coach, and we're thinking about going to Salina Soccer Club in the spring so that Zane doesn't end up with her again. Salina Soccer Club is a lot more of a financial investment though, so we'll see. He's decided he doesn't want to play basketball, and just focus on soccer now. I would say that soccer is where his talent is much more so than basketball, so I think this was a good choice.

Zane's parent teacher conference is this Thursday. We pretty much already know what we're going to hear, because we can check his grades online.(As of last Monday he was sitting at 5 A's and 3 B's, unless something changed significantly last week. He has over a 100% in band thanks to getting points for not using his hall passes. Up until a week ago, he had over a 100% in science too. How awesome is that?!) It will be good to talk to one of his teachers though (in middle school we only talk to one teacher instead of all 8 of them, thank goodness!) and find out how he's doing on organization and behavior. This will be the first conference Zane has attended, so that should be interesting with his mom there too.

Tomorrow we're headed to Sunny Side Pumpkin Patch. I'm excited to take Raegan for the first time, so I hope it's not too busy!

Fun with blocks

video
My mom found some really cool waffle blocks at a garage sale this morning for Raegan and Zane. I say Zane because he loves anything that's castles and such, and he likes playing with Raegan. :)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Yummy

I made these cookie sandwiches tonight. Totally recommend the recipe, as they are super easy to make. I haven't tried one yet, but I'm guessing they are tasty. Just a note if you ever make them: you have to add way more powdered sugar than she calls for. I think maybe it's because I use Blue Bonnet stick margarine instead of real butter. Can't afford real butter. :)

It was a looooong day of parent teacher conferences at work, so I'm just too tired to repost the recipe here. Plus, her pictures are way cuter than mine.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Funny brother

In case you weren't aware, everything Zane does is hilarious. True fact.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Uh oh!

So this weekend, Luke was outside doing something in the garage, and I ran downstairs to the basement to look up something on the internet. After a couple minutes, I realized that the sounds of Raegan playing had disappeared, so I headed upstairs to investigate. I wasn't really worried, because when she gets hurt she screams bloody murder. I walked into the living room to discover this:



So lesson learned: if things get quiet, there is mischief at hand.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Church Search

I started my search for a new church this morning. The kids and I have been going to Grand Avenue UMC for almost 3 years now, but my main reason for going there was that I loved the pastor. Her messages were always great and I learned a lot from her. However, the Methodist church has this lovely practice of moving pastors, so she left this last summer. We really haven't been going to church anywhere since then, but I knew we wouldn't be going back to Grand regularly. It's an older congregation and there aren't a lot of activities for children. I want to find a church that has a good Sunday School program, and possibly a Wednesday night activity so that Raegan can get involved when she gets older.

Today Raegan and I (Zane is at his mom's) went to Trinity UMC. I had been there for a wedding a couple years ago, so I knew it wasn't a HUGE church, but that it wasn't little tiny either. I've been to both ends of the spectrum, and I would like to find an in between. I looked Trinity up on the internet and saw that they had a contemporary service during Sunday School and that they had a nursery during all services if I should decide I wanted to go at a different time. I really liked that the nursery gives parents a pager so that if there are any major problems you can come back to the nursery. There were four women in the nursery (and 4 or 5 babies/toddlers) so the ratio was good, and a LOT of toys for Raegan to play with. She wasn't too nervous about me leaving, and they never had to page me. She seemed like she was really enjoying herself when I came to pick her up. I also like that this church starts Sunday School at age 2, so she won't be just in the nursery for years.

I also liked that the service I went to was short and sweet (a little less than an hour) and the music was wonderful. The sermon was about Exodus and it was pretty good, although I still miss Pastor Nancy. :( The only thing I didn't really like was that the 9:50 service is a much smaller service, so there were only 30 or so people in the sanctuary. The pastor asked for opinions on the scripture and the whole thing was a little more interactive than what I'm used to. I don't go to Sunday School because of all my social anxiety, so I'm not really wanting a church service like that. I will definitely get there a little earlier next week so that I'm not stuck at the front. lol

So it was a good first search. I think we may go again next week, then perhaps try one or two other churches on my list. I don't see anywhere that this church has midweek programs for children, so we may keep looking. One of the things I LOVED about the church Zane and I went to in Manhattan is that they had a wonderful midweek program for kids. Zane had a lot of fun and learned, and it was nice to have because he wasn't there to go to Sunday School every weekend. There's a church around the corner from us (hello, convenience!) that is very active and has a lot of kid's programming, so we may try that one out here soon.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Team pic

Zane's team won again this morning, putting them at 2-2-1 (2 wins, 2 ties, and 1 loss). Next week is his last game. I can't believe the season is over already!

Zane's soccer team

Finally!

Here's that video I mentioned last weekend of Raegan trying to crawl into one of my kitchen cabinets. Now that I've switched over to uploading videos with YouTube, I can get anything on here now. As long as I'm willing to wait, that is!

The world is her oyster now

After many desperate attempts to get up on the couch last night, Raegan finally succeeded. She was VERY crabby last night, so hence the teeny fit she throws in the middle of the video. She always gets so mad when she knows what she wants to do but she just can't quite accomplish it.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

This week in Raeganland

No pictures this post. Just updating some of the things that Raegan is up to these days.

Speech:
-Raegan says "uh oh" now, but only copying when someone else says it. She's not connecting it to something that has happened on her own yet, but it sure is darn cute to hear her say "uh oh" over and over after you say it. :)

-One of her favorite things to do when Daddy and Zane are downstairs is to crawl over to the baby gate at the top of the stairs and yell "Hey!" downstairs.

Walking:
-Raegan is starting to walk a LOT more. She's also doing a great job of standing independently and staying steady while standing for a good 5 or 6 seconds now. She's most motivated to walk when she can walk to someone, but sometimes we'll see her do it when she's walking circles around the coffee table. She still giggles when she walks more than 4 steps, like it's just so awesome that she can do this now.

Personality:
-Raegan loves going outside, to the point where it's almost over the top. Most evenings when we let Daisy out Raegan is right at the door hollering at us if we don't let her out on the deck also. I *did* say I wanted a child that liked being outside....

-Raegan is curious about everything right now. She wants to know how everything works and she is getting into everything! I can only imagine when she's walking even better.

-She is bound and determined that we will nurse forever, I think. I have a three day weekend coming up in a couple weeks, and that's when we're going to start getting rid of the morning nursing. My goal was to have her weaned by Thanksgiving, so I guess I better get on that pretty soon. :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Weekend

Here's a couple pictures from the rest of our weekend. I didn't take any at the dog show that Zane and I went to, because meh. Who wants to see a whole bunch of dogs that don't belong to anyone you know? Well, maybe you do. I don't know. :)


Zane and I went to this farm a couple miles outside of town that was selling pumpkins. It wasn't an actual pumpkin patch, but just someone selling a cool variety of pumpkins. The one on top is called an Australian Blue and the one below is called Uncle Fester. The one below is actually going to go with me to my classroom later this week so we can guess what the inside looks like and then chop it open.




Piggy back ride!


Raegan kept herself well entertained while I baked yesterday. I've tried a couple times, but I can't get the video of her trying to fit in the cabinet to upload. She never did figure out how to do it. :)




Go K-State!

Apple Pie cupcakes

Cutest cupcake liners ever!
Thanks to a coworker, I have discovered this website. It has a LOT of recipes that I am interested in trying, but I decided to start off with a very fall taste - apple pie cupcakes. These ended up being quite a bit of work. If I had an apple corer/peeler, it probably would have gone a lot quicker. I think if I were going to make them again I would skip the homemade apple mixture in the middle and just buy a can of apple pie filling. Might not taste as good, but it would definitely save me some time. The other note to make about this recipe is that the frosting recipe is not correct.
On her website it calls for 2 1/2 c. butter and 2 1/2 c. powdered sugar, which if you've ever made frosting before, you can tell right away this isn't correct. I think I might have ended up with something like 4-5 c. powdered suger, which ended up making waaaaaaay too much frosting. So I would halve the rest of the ingredients and then add powdered sugar until you get the consistency and flavor you're looking for. I wasn't a huge fan of the taste of the frosting, but everyone else raved about it, so it must just be me. :)

I'm not as artistic as the blogger I got the recipe from, so don't judge my pictures. lol


Apple Pie Cupcakes
Yield: 24 cupcakes

For the cupcakes:

3 cups sifted cake flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup milk

For the apple filling:

2 tbsp. butter
2 tsp. cinnamon
2-3 tbsp. sugar
3 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced


Directions:

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350°. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, sift together the cake flour, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well and scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and mix well to combine. Add in the dry ingredients alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined.

Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners, filling them about 2/3-3/4 full. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18 to 22 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pans. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.


Cupcakes fresh out of the oven. Again, don't judge my photography skills.

To make the apple filling, heat the butter a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the cinnamon and sugar and cook for a minute, until the mixture begins to bubble. Lower the heat to medium and stir in the apples. Mix well. Cook until the apples are somewhat tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

I would seriously make a double batch and eat the leftovers with ice cream. So yummy!
While the apple mixture is cooling, use the cone method to remove a chunk from the center of each cupcake, making sure to leave a rim around the top of the cupcake. Fill the holes with the cooled apple mixture. To decorate, top each cupcake with a swirl of vanilla buttercream.


A little taste of fall!

For decorating:

Easy Vanilla Buttercream

20 tbsp. (2 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1/8 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbsp. heavy cream

Directions:

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat butter at medium-high speed until smooth, about 20 seconds. Add confectioners’ sugar and salt; beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened, about 45 seconds. Scrape down the bowl and beat at medium speed until mixture is fully combined, about 15 seconds. Scrape bowl, add vanilla and heavy cream, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 10 seconds. Then increase the speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping down bowl once or twice.

Copied from Annie's Eats

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Wichita Zoo

Today was a perfect day to go to the zoo. It was about 65 and sunny, with very little wind. We made it there by a little after 10:00, and brought sandwiches so we wouldn't have to worry about paying for overpriced food so that Raegan didn't have a complete meltdown.


Listening to different amphibian sounds





This one penguin kept swimming right up to the glass, like he wanted to take a look at the map in Zane's hand, so Zane let him have a look.






I have this exact same picture of Zane from when him and I went when he was 7 or 8. I should compare sometime.



In the rainforest



The otters were also very friendly and kept coming up to the glass.



Showoff!



At the new tiger exhibit






Why do primates always look so pouty when they aren't moving around?



We've never seen a bear come so close before. It was awesome!



We've also never seen a bear actually play with the ball that's always in the water.



What do you suppose they were all looking at? There's wasn't anything in the sky above us. I looked, and then felt kind of silly for looking.



Baby!



Riding on the wooden horse at the petting zoo








Zane milking a "cow"


Zane and Raegan at the end of the day

Raegan did such a good job today! She fussed quite a bit in the car on the way up, and ended up sleeping for about 30 minutes before we got there, but she didn't cry once at the zoo. When we stopped in a picnic area to eat lunch, two very friendly geese came within a foot of us trying to get a handout. I was a little freaked out, because I remember the not-so-friendly geese we had when I was growing up. These guys were easily shooed by the stroller, but they kept coming back. The fun fact that Zane and I learned today was that there is no actual breed called a panther. That's just the name people use for black jaguars or leopards. Did not know that.