Friday, October 22, 2010

Clearly it's the Fall

I suppose the weather changing is a clear indication that fall has arrived especially in California. Half the time it's about eighty degrees in October, so the fact that we've had cloudy skies and rain for almost a week certainly helps bring on the feelings of fall. We are doing the school run around thing of course. School, bible study, soccer, dance. I'm definitely not in my summer hang out routine. But nothing say fall like a good old fashioned virus that brings on the sniffles, coughs, and whiny kids! As always, we aren't talking about one virus...well maybe one but times six. We are three weeks in and I think it's passed through each one of us and we did survive. Just survived with fewer blog posts.

Monday, October 11, 2010

A New Love for Mondays...

I know by the title of this post and the age of my children, some of you might be connecting the dots that I love Mondays because half the brood is off to school. Although it is always nice to have an hour or so to run the errands with only two kids instead of four, my new love for Mondays has little to do with the kiddies in school.

About a month ago I rolled over in bed at 6 something in the morning and said to David, "The only reason I like Mondays is because I don't have to cook dinner." I know this is a dramatic statement and I'm not that hopeless of a person, but Mondays are really difficult for me. Sundays usually are restful for most with the last push for relaxation and some minor preparationa for the coming week. Not for us, and probably not for any of my pastor wife readers either. I head into Monday barely wanting to start the school carpool.

I love cooking, so this isn't exactly about making dinner either. The problem is that I love cooking under the perfect conditions...uninterrupted while sipping wine and hanging out with my hubby. Given how rare this occurs, it makes sense that I'd take any chance to skip cooking.

Enter Supper Swap. I have participated in a supper swap once before while in seminary and it was wonderful. Not only did we have dinner made for us three times a week, the four of us lived in the same apartment complex so delivery was easy as pie. So we've been a part of a supper swap now for a month with some friends of mine in our town and it's been so good for me. Just as we headed into the fall craziness of school, soccer, church, etc. dinner comes to my door rescuing me from adding one more thing to do at the witching hour. Love it!!! Thanks Teri and Kelly. It's always exciting when new recipes spice up your rut and make dinner a little more fun. Speaking of...dinner is about to arrive at my door already cooked and we are ready to eat it.

Friday, October 08, 2010

The Pumpkin Patch

So does it count if I post twice in one day?

Today was Addie's first field trip of the year. We headed out to the pumpkin patch for what was supposed to be some fun, but I felt kind of doomed from the start. I woke up to put the girls clothes in the drier so we could have some dry jeans for the patch and discovered that a diaper had been put in the wash. No, we are not going green in this department. We use the regular old disposables which posed a big problem when the diaper absorbed so much liquid and then hit the spin cycle. The inside of the diaper exploded and spread all over our clothes. Jeans not going to be dry or clean for that matter. We moved on to getting shirts on. Addie has a school shirt about three sizes too big for field trips. She began screaming and running away from me throughout the house not wanting to put it on...I won as all mothers will do eventually.

We finally made it out of the house, Addie, Lila and myself directions in hand. I of course have my great gadget savvy i phone where I should have just inserted the address and trusted upon the technology to get me there. Not the case. I decide to save 30 seconds and just follow the paper written instructions from the school. Bad idea. The directions have the correct address, but the line by line directions sent me a mile in the wrong direction ending in a gated apartment complex. By the time we arrive, I'm running out of steam.

The bright side...Addie loved it and at this rate we are looking for every positive school experience we can take:) The down side...see Lila's picture...that about sums up her experience. We left before snack time ever happened. Note to self...rethink Lila going to preschool next year! On second thought...start her now so i don't have to witness as many screaming episodes??? Just kidding, she is a joy even when she's difficult!

Anyway, I returned home and am headed to the church women's retreat sans kids tonight. I think I may skip dinner, speaker and socializing for the pillow. Would anyone notice if the pastor's wife was a no show. I'm thinking probably not.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Fall Favorites

I absolutely love the fall. The first sign of cooler temperatures and I want to make pumpkin pie and soup. So that is exactly what I did. I brought out my dear friend's favorite recipe from Ina Garten for Beef Bourguignon and made a huge batch along with a few pies. It was delightful. I had candles burning in the fireplace, music streaming in the background and yes for just a minute or two the sound of the children was actually distant while they all played in the back bedroom. It was fantastic! Later that evening we had our community group over to enjoy the bounty.

I've also been wanting to do some fall decorating, so I started some new projects. I went on a quest for some white pumpkins and Michael's came through. I have a love hate relationship with this store. I love it for the sheer mass of crafty goods found in one location and hate it because it is always so messy...perhaps due to folks like me dragging four kids through a store where children shouldn't be permitted meanwhile touching and grabbing loot along the way only to be put down in an entirely different location than where it belongs. Yes...I hate it because of me.

My first project began after a little outing to one of our favorite breakfast spots called Haute Cakes. It is a delightful little cafe/ bakery that uses fresh and often organic ingredients. There are a few tables outside on a patio where you can sit and glance at all the stores in this little atrium. I stumbled upon a store called Urban Gardner that was filled with some great fall decor that was entirely too overpriced. Lila came in with me and announced, "It smells!" She has her mother's nose, but hasn't developed a liking for potpori and other great scents. So pretty much everything that has a scent smells to her. So the Urban Gardner inspired my crafty side. Anyway, I made these fun little treat jars for my counter. The kids love to just sit and stare at the candies. They have been a real convenient potty treat for Lila while we are potty training.

The second thing was to spruce up my fall wreath. The one I have is so old but I just didn't want to break down and spend money on one this year, so I bought a few leave strands at Michael's and freshened it up. Now if only our house wasn't's not very fall like.

Finally, I've been wanting to do change our fireplace for the entire year that we lived in this house but the puking, bedrest, pregnant, newborn phase just kept me away. Our fireplace is non operational. It started with fake logs and purple rocks. We pulled out all of the purple rocks and at last the logs were removed and I filled it with candles. I'm in love with my candlelit fireplace! Loving the warmth it brings to our home.

And Now...

So now that I've caught up on the last seven months in about ten photos, I am on to a new plan for the blog. I'm thinking that each day (or so, I can't give myself too much slack or I'll fall off the blogosphere again) I want to capture a thought about just one thing...maybe a kid, a recipe, a trip, a fiasco. I have so many things going on that I feel as if I am just running circles around the kids, the driving, cooking meals, etc. that I am often too overwhelmed to take to the keyboard. No more! So perhaps my pledge to focus on one thing will help me slow down and remember the fun, crazy, or sometimes important stuff. I'm done for today, but tomorrow I'm on to the First Day's of School. A pinching or biting this year!

Spring Activities

Lila turned two on March 25 and we had a little family celebration since Hadleigh was so little. The rest of the spring we tried out our new hobbies...Addie Grace started dance and Wyatt started T-ball. They both had a lot of fun and learned so many new things. Wyatt really enjoyed making some little buddies on his team. Addie started preschool a few months later only to find out a girl from her dance class was in her preschool class. You would think that might have been enough to excite her but that just didn't inspire her. She showed up on the second day and pinched the substitute teacher. That's our little Addie...full of fire and so very stubborn. She's liking it a little better this fall.

Back in the Saddle

I had to take a second guess when logging into the think I'm a little rusty! Well, here goes nothing. Announcing Hadleigh Joy Juelfs, born March 2, 2010, it's been so long I can't remember anything else...oh, she weighed 6 pounds 1 ounce. I guess that's probably all I can say for the beginning of March. Then, Lila turned two. Can I use that as an excuse for not updating my blog? That's all you get for now while I scan my backup hard drive for all the pictures detailing our life over the last seven months.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A New Year

I'm pretty sure I lost any and all interest in posting pictures from Christmas. I know it's kind of sad, but let's face it I just don't want to. We had a great December filled with a lot of fun activities and new memories and most of them were captured on camera thanks to the new digital camera we bought as a Christmas gift!

David is definitely the photographer of the family and it has been a gift a long time coming for my hubby to get a great digital camera and start shooting his family. He picked it out and it is like an old hobby has come alive again. It's been a lot of fun. Needless to say I have plenty of photos to choose from, but you know like I said I just don't want to. I feel like Christmas has come and gone and I'm on to new getting this baby out of me.

I have eight more weeks, so I shouldn't be that motivated but you know I always count on my babes to pop out two weeks early! So, in light of my countdown, I find myself busy setting things up already around the house. I have lists in my head, lists on my iphone, lists on the computer of things that need to be done, need to be purchased, etc. I think I'll find plenty to do to fill these next two months. Better yet, maybe I should focus on finding a name for this baby. I might need the pressure of seeing her to make a decesion.

The pictures above are from a family trip to The Santa Rosa Plateau. I must say...hubby done good once again. Love you babe!