Easter madness

isn't there madness with every holiday? just when you think you got it all figured out there's always a curve ball in there somewhere. our Easter madness began saturday afternoon. just in time for dying eggs.

okay friends, i have been dying eggs for a long time and for some reason the directions on the dye packet didn't seem right, so i made up my own directions and added water to the dye. not thinking this would totally dilute the color and take forever to get beautifully dyed eggs. i know a big "duh" to me. so, instead of waiting forever, i ran back up to the store got another package of dye and followed the directions this time. which was much better until...

this little fella came along and thought it would be fun to mix all the colors together. again a big "duh" to me. i should have thought this one through a little bit better. so, in the mix of trying to help the little miss and keep him from sabotaging our dye, he some how spilled the blue dye all over himself. (with a sigh of relief) the mister took him in for a bath and left the little miss and i to our decorating.

we decided to keep it simple and just go for solid colors and they were turning out nice.

then, all of a sudden this little fella came running back out for more, stark naked and almost sabotaged us again until the mister came and got him again and the little miss and i finished in peace. with those out of the way, i went inside to get the rest of our Easter stuff together. i made a couple of breakfast casseroles for our brunch, my girl made some beignet's with a little help from me and i made some giant sugar cookies for dessert. (recipes below) finally, it was time to put the kiddo's to bed and get some baskets together. the picture below will be my reminder for next year that there is no need for presentation when doing this for the little fella...

the first thing he did was pick up the basket, turn it upside down and shook everything out of it.
but, he was extremely stoked with these bad boys.

i decided to set our table in yellow because i love yellow. you already know that right?

this was our spread. french toast casserole, sausage and egg casserole, yummy fried potatoes with gravy and beignets with strawberries. i know we should have all had heart attacks after this meal, but it's not like we eat like this everyday.

with full tummies and lots of energy, it was time for the egg hunt. 107 eggs. yes i know that's crazy. but, it's just what we do. my mom, my sister and myself all fill and contribute a set of eggs to the hunt. all of our eggs are filled with candy or money and we each put a $5 bill in one of our eggs.

so, the heat is on to see,

who will get

the most eggs and/or the most money
and between these two

it's always a competition.

we finished our day with these yummy giant sugar cookies and strawberries. there's always some goodness to every bit of madness. oh and for those of you who are wondering who "won" the egg hunt, they both did. my nephew found 35 eggs, just one more than my girl, but she found two of the $5 bills and got the most money which was $21 all together. she's informed me she only needs one more dollar to buy a big lalaloopsy. and now for those recipes i promised...


stuffed french toast

24 slices of cinnamon raisin bread
cooking spray
3 cups milk
6 eggs
1 cup half and half
1 cup sugar, divided
1 tbls. vanilla extract
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 (8 ounce) block cream cheese, softened
1 (8 ounce) block 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened

1. trim crust of a bread. arrange in a 13x9 baking dish coated with cooking spray.
2. combine milk, 4 eggs, half and half, and 1/2 cup sugar in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. pour half of milk mixture over bread in a dish.
3. combine 2 eggs, 1/2 cup sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and cheeses in a food processor or blender; process until smooth. pour cream cheese mixture over moist bread in dish. top with remaining bread; pour remaining milk mixture over bread. cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
4. preheat oven to 350*
5. uncover and bake at 350* for 55 minutes. let stand 10 minutes before serving and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar if desired. yields 12 servings (servings size: 1 piece)

i used chicken sausage instead of pork and added a green and red bell pepper

giant sugar cookies

(makes 10) i always double the recipe

2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
8 tbls. butter (1 stick)
1 1/2 cups sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup sour cream

1. preheat oven to 350*. in a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda; set aside.
2. using an electric mixer on med-high, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 2 to 4 minutes. add egg and vanilla; beat well to combine.
3. with mixer on low add half the flour mixture, followed by sour cream, then remaining flour mixture; mix just until smooth. ( dough will be stiff; you may need to finish mixing it by hand with a wooden spoon)
4. drop mounds of dough, each equal to 3 tbls, 3 -4 inches apart, onto two ungreased cookie sheets; sprinkle with sugar. bake untiol edges of cookies are just firm and tops are barely beginning to brown, 20 - 25 minutes, rotating sheets once halfway through. transfer cookies to a rack to cool.


good eats

i have a secret. it's really, really good. i mean really, really good as in delicious! it's called BRUXIE and they make gourmet waffle sandwiches. i read about them in the AAA westway magazine that comes to our house monthly. ( i know i'm a nerd for reading it), but they often write about little treasures right around our home and BRUXIE's is one of them. they're not too far. they're in old towne orange, which = bonus antique shop browsing. but, that's a whole other post. back to BRUXIE, did i mention they're delicious? let me tell you about them. first, they offer six sandwiches, not including their specials. we have only been twice and both times we have gotten the same things. (what can i say, we find something we like, we stay with it). i get the buttermilk fried chicken & waffle with chili honey and cole slaw= yum. the mister gets the BRUXIE burger which is just like a regular hamburger, but in a waffle! we both order our own side of waffle fries because they are that good and we once made the mistake of thinking we could share a bag and like i said, it was a mistake. second, they only serve "old fashion" sodas. way better than any coke or pepsi product out there. third, they also have sweet treats like a lemon cream & berries waffle or a nutella & bananas waffle served with sweet cream. (i haven't tried these yet, but one day i am just gonna go for dessert). they also have shakes and floats, sundae's and frozen custard. everything on the menu sounds so tasty, i want to try it all! lastly, they use environmentally sound products. i like that in a restaurant. i would rather drink out of a recyclable, "made in the usa" cup than a styrofoam cup any day. and they serve your food in biodegradable cartons and they have a conscious for our earth. so, in honor of "earth day" yesterday, the mister and i took a little trip out to old towne orange and ate in eco friendly meal at BRUXIE's.
take a look...

p.s. we were on a date and i didn't have my regular camera. i only had my cellphone so the pictures really aren't the best. and thanks to the mister for letting me geek out and take pictures while we were on a date so, i could do this post. go ahead say it, i'm a nerd - he did!


{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.


more books please

yeah! we have a new, big bookshelf and i love it! i know it seems as though i always have my mister working on some kind of project for me, but it really isn't entirely me. let me explain. the latest project was a bookshelf to house the many, many children's books we own. now, even though i am not a huge ikea furniture fan, i would've been ok with buying one from them, just for that instant gratification that i think, is so satisfying for most of us. we even made a trip there to see what they had, which (insert smiling face) made the mister more adamant about making his own. so, see it's not entirely me. he does it to himself. the thought of press board furniture sends a shiver down his spine. in all honestly, i am glad it does because i think the things that he builds look and are way better than anything we could get from ikea.

and so, now we have a bookshelf that suits our needs and our aesthetic too. i wanted a bookshelf with nice tall and deep shelves. these shelves are 30"w x 16"d x 18"d.
they're perfect.

i was able to get all of our books in it. even though this process gave me a major headache and left me feeling frustrated, after a few days of admiring it and being able to find a book without having to search the whole house, made the experience all worth while.

p.s. it is not my intent to bag on ikea. i actually really like ikea for some things. like the things that my husband can't make, like our couch...

again, it was not my first choice, but it fit our budget and our lifestyle with two little kiddo's and it works for us.

*i saw this on my friends blog and thought i would give it a try. so, for the first time i am linking up to life made lovely and i am keeping my fingers crossed that i do it right*


friday clouds

friday was such a busy day for us over here. we were rushing about all day, going from one place to another. it was tiresome, i had a headache, and i had to give away a lot of money that i really just don't have to give right now. so i felt annoyed. but, as we were rushing about, i notice the big, puffy clouds in the sky and for some reason it just made me feel a little bit better. the sky was so blue and the clouds so white, it just looked peaceful to me. i can remember as kid thinking how fun it would be if i could play in the clouds. i thought it would be so soft and bouncy. i needed that memory on this day. it made the day seem a little bit better. that and the fact that i knew i was going to go out to dinner with my sister - kid free. while i waited for my sister to come and get me i went outside to snap a few pics. take a look...

i even decided to bring my camera with me to get a few on the way

i know, i am a nerd. but, sometimes it's the simple things that just make it all better.

here's a little sneak peak of an upcoming post. the mister is working on another project for me...


we got peeps (real ones)

we have chickens! well eventually we will have chickens. they're chicks right now and they are the cutest things ever. we have been wanting chickens and planned on getting two, one for each of the kiddo's, but a funny thing happened the other evening. one of our neighbors that lives behind us came over to our house to ask us if we had chickens. to make a really long story short, she had a baby chick that her daughter had rescued from somebody who couldn't keep it. her daughter couldn't keep it either. she had seen two chickens on my next door neighbors back wall and thought it was us and wanted to know if we would want another chick. i explained to her those were not our chickens, but we would be happy to take the chick. so on that note, meet our new chick peep...

the story doesn't end their though folks. the little miss has taken peep to be her own and the little fella needed a chick to be his own (remember i told you we wanted to get two). we took a little visit to the local feed store to get one for him take a look...

good old fashion feed store

we have chicks

we got two more because they are just too cute and only $2. the black one is garrett's he named her baby chick, i call her midge. the fluffy yellow one is mine. i named her little.

we introduced them to peep. the man at the feed store told us to watch them around peep because she is older she might try to peck at them.

but, she didn't she did great with them.

these two are already best buds. my chicken little keeps trying to cuddle up to peeps. i think she thinks she's the mama. don't they look so cute here? i think so.

if your thinking of getting chickens in the future this is a good place for info. my experience thus far with chicks has been good and relatively easy. next up, the bunny we promised to get our little miss. my, we might just have our own mini farm going on here pretty soon.


my mom

my mom never lets me take pictures of her. if i try to she puts her hand in front of her face or makes a goofy face. but, a few weeks ago she celebrated her 68th birthday and for some reason she let me snap some photos of her. she did put up a fuss at first. but, when i explained to her that i wanted pictures of her for and with my kids, she softened up and let me snap a few. if any of you know my mom she is quite the character. she always has been. she even started to strike a pose on a few. take a look...

this was the first one

then she tried to do some pose she heard about on tv to get rid of her double chin

with her only granddaughter

with her 3rd grandson

i love this pic even though i am not sure what the little miss is looking at and why my little fella has his arm hanging out of his shirt

finally, to end our photo shoot the little miss took the camera to get this one of me and my mom

if you haven't taken a picture with your mom lately, do so the next time you see her. it's something you'll treasure forever.


on celebrating him + a charlie brown birthday

2 weeks ago we were finally able to celebrate our little fella's 2nd birthday. i say finally because this little fella turned 2 way back in february and we had to reschedule his party 3 times due to illnesses and rain. it seriously has been one heck of a season, but that's a whole other story. so rain or shine we were having our charlie brown birthday party for our little fella. and, of course it rained. like not just a drizzle or a sprinkle, but full on down poor. we were sticking true to our theme because wouldn't that be charlie browns luck, to rain on his birthday? i think so. so, we went with it. thankfully we have this home now and we are able to fit more than a handful of people in here. it was time to celebrate. it didn't go exactly as i planned (something i am learning just to let go of), but it went and we had fun. take a look...

the birthday boy

the party favor table. i wanted to keep it simple with a homemade touch. the little miss and fella colored most of the decorations we used on the tables. we used recycled food jars wrapped with black rick rack as vases.

we made black/white chocolate chip cookies we called "snoopy snacks".

and homemade playdough stamped with a 2 and the letter G.

the food table consisted of a lot of sugary goods. just for fun i took most of the goods that snoopy served in "a charlie brown thanksgiving". i added some peppermint patties to the mix, as well as some hostess chocolate cupcakes because they just had that classic look i was going for. and the mister made a yellow + black paper chain to hang around his handmade birthday sign.

as you may know, when you throw a party for your little one or anyone for that matter, you hardly see them through the day. so after the party we took some of these shots...

mama + g

dada + g

our little charlie brown family