Archive for June, 2016

Oh how we love Kid President!

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

Several years ago my heart was won by a sweet little Kid President, Robby Novak. Get ready to smile…

The Kid President is a little boy with BIG voice. Robby, with the help of his older brother in law, Brad, began to make videos because they wanted to encourage kids to make a difference in our world. “I believe kids can change the world. I also believe grown ups can change the world. It just takes all of us working together.” Watching his videos, I am always left giggling and feeling so good about the world. With so much negative on social media, it is so great to have a good example for my little buddy to look up too, even better that he is silly too.

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I have used several of the KP’s videos to teach Jude a few valuable lessons; like how to treat others with respect, to be thankful, that we have so many reasons to dance, oh and that corn dogs are awesome!
Being the huge FAN that I am, I ordered Jude (ok, me) the Kid President Box. Of. Awesome. from fanjoy, mostly because I had been eager to get my hands on the book, The Kid President’s Guide to being Awesome. The box also included a T-shirt, enamel pins, stickers, postcards and a few do-good items as well.

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“This is LIFE, people! You’ve got air coming through your nose! You’ve got a heartbeat! That means it’s time to do something!” I look forward to sharing with you a few projects I have in line for our family as we take on the challenge to MAKE OUR WORLD A BETTER PLACE.

One last thing…

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Aren’t these enamel pins just the best? Mom gets the pins.

Happy Father’s Day & Meatloaf

Sunday, June 19th, 2016

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I know you would probably argue, but I happen to have the most wonderful grandfather in the world, my Gramp. I have never met anyone as self sacrificing, loving and hilarious as him. He was  and always be the greatest father in my life. He helped to raise me and to show me what it means to take care of family, to work hard and to love, love, love.  Every time I come home to Colorado for a visit, I know there will be an entire box of my favorite pink cherry chip cookies waiting for me on the counter and a pound of ground beef waiting in the refrigerator. Ground beef? Yes, the man loves a good meatloaf. I would love to one day cook him a very fancy meal; chicken marsala or maybe braised chicken in a white wine sauce… But no, just simple, classic meat loaf it is for him! And do not let me even try to add anything “fancy,” my gramp will catch it in a minute.

If I were home this Father’s Day this would be his treat. I nice hot slice of meatloaf and maybe a peach cobbler for dessert.

Happy Father’s Day to all my favorite fathers out there!

Classic Meatloaf

1 lb. ground chuck

1 small onion, chopped

1 green pepper

5-6 saltine crackers

2 eggs

1 clove of garlic

Salt and pepper

1 cup ketchup

1/2 cup brown sugar

Tabasco sauce

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Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Dice onion and bell pepper. In a large mixing bowl, combine onion, peppers, eggs, crumbled saltines, garlic and spices. There is no better way to combine a meatloaf (or meatballs) than through squishy finger but a rubber spatula will do as well. Do not overwork the mixture or your meat will become dense. Form raw meat into a loaf on sheet pan.

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Mix together ketchup and brown sugar. This is our family secret… this sauce is the bees knees and so simple. Spread half the sweet sauce on top of the loaf, reserving the rest to apply mid way through the baking.

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Surround vegetables around the edge of the pan for roasting. I enjoy potatoes, carrots, big chunks of onions or broccoli with my meatloaf. When roasting broccoli, I add them during the last 20 minutes of cooking. Bake for 60 minute or until meat temperature reads 155 degrees.

That’s it. Simple, classic meatloaf.

Enjoy!

On the Road: Panama City Beach, FL

Monday, June 13th, 2016

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I just wanted to share a few photos from our family vacation to Panama City Beach, Fl. Growing up in the mountains, I am still rather ackward jumping into flip flops and lounging by the ocean. The sand, the salt water, the JELLY FISH (eeek), I am still a little uncomfortable. I will admit few things beat lounging in the sun with a good book. I brought with me Brooklyn by  Colm Toibin and read it cover to cover. I rarely actually get into the ocean because I am a bit afraid of all the sea creatures, ha! When I finally braved the ocean waters with my little Jude man, a crab grabbed onto my pinkie toe and wouldn’t let go. I don’t think I have ever seen Jude laugh so hard. I am sure he will never stop telling that story… definitely worth the pinch.

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IMG_1678This was Bear’s first beach trip. He seemed to enjoy squishing the warm white sand in between his little toes. Sand was everywhere! I am thankful for a friend who shared with me the secret of using baby powder to help clean sand off of little faces and hands.

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My husband took our big buddy jet skiing. I was tickled because Jude continues to tell my how much fun he had with dad “ski diving.” The boys raced their jet ski out into the ocean and were able to find a whole school of dolphins playing around. Next, they stopped off at Shell Island to snorkel discovering tons of sea urchins, shells and lots of pretty coral. We used our new Ollo Clip macro lens to capture all the intricate patterns of our finds (sea urchin, hermit crab, sand dollar, coral).

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IMG_1547One afternoon we drove down to the little walking town of Seaside, FL. In Seaside we visited cute little boutique shops and ate lunch at a food truck strip. We couldn’t pass up trying a few toasty grilled cheese sandwiches from The Meltdown on 30A. We ordered sandwiches for the three of us; bacon, Brie on cranberry but bread for me, meatloaf for Jude and Spicy Turkey for Michael. The meatloaf sandwich was hands down our family favorite, melty mozarella, meatloaf, a thins slice of ham and marinara. We ended our lazy, strolling afternoon in Seaside with fresh juice from Raw and Juicy.

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We celebrated National Donut Day at the famous Thomas Donut and Snack Shack in Laguna Beach. We tried a dozen of their fun assorted flavors, the maple bacon was a hit but my favorite was the deliciously moist blueberry cake doughnut! We had a visitor for the weekend portion of our trip, our best buddy Amanda. Amanda is our nanny and Jude’s best friend in the whole wide world. She loved her swirly, extra cinnamon sugared treat.

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I am told it is a sin to visit PCB without trying out Pineapple Willy’s, there I ordered a giant icy cold virgin Pina Colada, perfect on a hot summer day.

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Each time we have made a trip to PCB my son leaves talking about “the upside down house,” Wonder Works Museum. As we drive along his face is usually squished against the window, screaming in excitement when he sees the building which looks as if it were lifted up into outer space and dropped (kerplunk) completely flipped upside down. Our last day in the city was overcast and rainy SO, Jude’s wish came true. Wonder Works is any kid’s dream; a tunnel that lets you feel 75 mile an hour winds, laying on a bed of nails, roller coaster simulators and more science labs than I could have imagined. Jude even got to step into an astronauts suit for a quick picture on the moon. Best buds and science… it doesn’t get any better.

Have you been to Panama City Beach? If so, what are your favorite places?

 

Flying Paper Airplanes