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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

This year for the Priest and Laurels Halloween party, Brady dressed up as a Pirate. He had a bunch of fun being this bad boy.
Ahoy, me Maties!
 Life’s pretty good, and why wouldn’t it be? I’m a pirate, after all.
 Yo ho!
 To err is human , To Arr is Pirate ...
 Surrender your booty!
 Boys love to be pirates. When Brady decided to be a pirate this year, of course I have flashbacks to my Jason.
 Jason loved being a pirate and was one for many years.
Aaay Matie!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Cross Country District Race

Friday, October 22nd was our Cross country District meet. This meet determines what schools goes to  State. Our varsity girls qualified to go to state! However, our varsity boys did not qualify. It was really sad. When Coach Rusty told the boys that they did not qualify, they were really upset and shed a few tears. Heartbreaking.

The boy who won the Boys varsity race ran it in 15 minutes 55 second. Dan from our team ran it in 16.28 and Chris ran it in 16.38 only a 10 second difference. Dan qualified to be the only boy from our school to compete in the state meet. They are fast!
 Junior Varsity teams getting ready to race. Brady is on the Junior Varsity team. You can see Meridian with the big "M: on their shirts.
 The meet was at Eagle Island and was a beautiful fall day.
 Go Brady!
 My friend Cherie took this picture. I love the location she took it - showing all the fall leaves. She has a great eye in finding the perfect spot to take a beautiful picture. I only worry about getting pictures of Brady and not missing him - not the setting. You can tell she is a true photographer with a great eye. I love this picture!
 Brady was REALLY happy with his race! He set a personal record!!!!!!! WOO HOO!!!
Brady broke 20 minutes which was his goal for the season.
He finished at 19.45.
He was also the 97th JV runner out of 240.
The winning time in the JV boys race was 17.01. 
It was a great way to end the season!
I am the proudest mom of all!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Witches Potion Center

I have made a witches potion center in the window above my kitchen sink. I'd love to have some dry ice bubbling from the calderon - maybe at Halloween.
 I've been looking for different potion bottles now and then.  I purchased the first 3 at the end of the season last year - cheap. The last 3 I purchased from Michael's this year for a dollar each. I didn't like the labels so I did a search for free potion labels and made the last 2.
 I also have been looking for a witches spell book. I'd love to have one like on Hocus Pocus with an eye on it. But, I found this cute printable and attached it to a book I already had. I love it. Here is a link to the printable for the witches spell book cover.
I also had 6 mini Martinelli's grape juice bottles on hand in my food storage center. I decided to make all my Vampire friends happy and added some blood to the window (Twilight).
 After we drink these, I'll add red liquid for a prop in the coming years.
I found this cool site called "Seeing Things: That Aren't Really There" and she has free printables for Apothecary jars here and more here. Her blog is pretty cool for Halloween ideas- Enjoy!

I love my new potion center AND I love free printables.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Cross Country Time Trials

Last Friday was Time Trials for the cross country team. They have a time trial at the first of the season and one near the end. This shows how they have improved through the season. Brady went from 5.58 to 5.27 minutes for a mile or 4 times around the track.

I hadn't planned on attending, because parents haven't been invited in the past couple of years. I was preparing for my Primary class party and struggled to make myself go. I struggled because I had my night planned out and 1/2 before I needed to be there I received a call from Brady asking me to come. I decided to go and support my wonderful son.

Here is a link to last years Time Trials and Pink Brady. I didn't attend last year- but wished that I could have - it looks like such a fun evening and Brady also won a shoe.

During the last time trial event, the kids put on spirit skits. They are divided into 4 groups and they compete against each other for the best skit.

Brady's teams theme is "FIRE". They spent the whole day after school together practising the skit, figuring out costumes and having a great time together.
Tom, Molly, Lela, Brady and Dylan
Here is their skit. It totally bombed. The fire wouldn't stay lit. It was funny but they totally lost.
This team sang "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" I thought it was great and so were their costumes. They didn't win because they did not prepare a skit until about an hour before the event began. No preparation, but I really liked it and they did a great job.
This team is the Skittles. Here is their skit lyrics:

All you other sucka teams
With your one color themes
Yeah you're borin' like vanilla
And you know that we're so killa

We're kickin' butt in all our races
Yeah we're takin' home first places
And we know that you're so jealous
'Cuz we got some muscley (sp?) fellas! (Ohhhh!)

Our girls are smokin' hot
And you know we can't be stopped
So get on your knees and bow,
Everybody say it now...
After the skits the girls race and then the boys. This is the boys. (I didn't take a picture of the girls)
After the races are finished it's award time. The Skittles skit won 2nd place.
Glow in the dark one first place.
Here is their skit. Their fire worked.
Then they give baby shoe awards to the runners who have improved the most between the 2 time trials. It was a very fun and cold evening. I'm glad I went.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Log Holders - What a Great Thing!

About a month ago Big Lots advertised a Log Rack on sale for $36. I had never seen such a cool idea and I wanted one. Unfortunately when I finally got to the store they had sold out, in fact they said they could have sold hundreds.

I decided to check the Internet to purchase one. Amazon had several to choose from. I read the reviews how the cover was really cheap and didn't last. I decided to purchase a little bit more expensive one with more quality for $54.

When it arrived, it was only the cover. I didn't read the contents and thought this included a log rack AND cover. Oh great!! I had a cover but NO log rack.

I decided to check for just a log rack on Amazon. They had them, but wanted $20 to ship it. I had already spent more money then I originally wanted to and didn't want to spend another $50+ to get the log rack too.

I decided to check Lowe's on-line to see if they sold it. They did! In fact they had them in stock at my local store for $37. I drove over that night and bought the log rack.
I asked Brady to put it together and fill it full of wood just outside our back door. I really try to find ways to give him "manly" opportunities to prepare him to be a husband. He didn't complain and did this while I was at work on a day off of school.

 It's enough wood to last at least a week. I love it! I've never seen this before and think it is a very clever idea.
Here it is with the cover closed. It is a very heavy duty cover and will last a long long time. Although I spent more money they I originally wanted, both are good quality and will be a blessing as I get older. When I'm a single old woman, I'll just need to hire a boy from my ward to come every week to fill it (IF my boys live away from me - and I have no grand kids). Then I'll be able to continue to build fires with the wood soooo close to the house.

Over all this is a great investment for me.
We;ve been enjoying a nice fire every evening. At the beginning of cooler nights in the fall, I seem to build more fires then at the end of winter into spring. It's a new and give a cozy warmth that fills our home.

But... who knows, I may build fires all winter and spring until it's hot... Now that I have a handy dandy log rack just outside my door.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

It's Hallo-scream!

I boo believe in Ghosts! I boo, I boo, I boo!
Breakfast at our house. Last year we had a chocolate chip face, but Brady didn't like the chocolate chips in his breakfast. This year no face - but still cute.
A spooky tour of our house. Welcome! The witch is in.
Please park all brooms at the door and come on in for a  little closer look.
 Booooooo is spoken here. Ghosts pop in from house to house with flashing lights in our spooky village.
Our new cabinet that holds piano music. What a ghastly ghost!
Just hanging out with my ghoul friends.
A new spider ... Can you see it hanging in the middle of the room?
A closer look ... plus spiders in the rock over the fireplace AND crawling on the outside of our house.

You can see more detailed decorations from the past here and here.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Motivational Monday - "Tricky Treats"

Motivational Monday is a little different today. While browsing, I found this great article in The New Era from 1982. I thought there were some great ideas to make this holiday fun for your family. Enjoy!

Dian Thomas, “Tricky Treats,” New Era, Oct 1982, 28

It’s pumpkin season! Halloween fun and fall harvest celebrations wouldn’t be complete without the pumpkin’s toothy grin or scary scowl. Whether you’re planning a special family dinner, a holiday party, or trick-or-treat sweets, you’ll want to include these pumpkin creations.
Decorating with Pumpkins
With a little ingenuity and time, you can turn an ordinary garden pumpkin into a spooky party decoration or a beguiling table centerpiece. Here’s a tip for carving jack-o’-lanterns: When you cut the top off the pumpkin, cut a triangular notch on the back side. The notch makes it easy to match the edges when replacing the lid.
Spooky Jack-O-Lantern This jack-o’-lantern adds atmosphere to a party celebration as fogs of “witches’ brew” steam from its face. You’ll need the following materials:

1 large pumpkin
1 #10 can (such as a shortening can)
1/2 cup salt
3 pounds dry ice, chunked
Flashlight (optional)

Cut off the pumpkin top and clean out the seeds and pulp. Carve a face on the pumpkin. Place the # 10 can inside the pumpkin, add 1/2 cup salt, then fill the can 3/4 full of hot water. If your pumpkin is large enough, place a flashlight behind the can to add drama to the decoration. Drop two or three medium-to-large chunks of dry ice into the can of water. (Be sure to wear gloves when handling dry ice.) The dry ice will send steam filtering from the jack-o’-lantern’s face. When the fog begins to diminish, remove the can and replenish the water. (The dry ice cools the water and causes ice to form around the dry ice, stopping the action. Adding hot water will melt the ice and start the process again.)

Pumpkin Punch Bowl A jack-o’-lantern punch bowl doubles as a centerpiece. Clean out the inside of a large pumpkin, wiping and rinsing until all fiber and pumpkin strings are gone. Use acrylic paints or marking pens to draw a face on the outside of the pumpkin. Refrigerate the pumpkin until you’re ready to use it, then pour in cider or punch. The cool pumpkin will keep your drink cold throughout the evening.

Pumpkin Treats These goblin goodies include foods made with pumpkin, as well as foods made to look like jack-o’-lanterns. Each treat is quick and easy to make.

Jack-O-Lantern Dinner Pumpkin flavors this entrée and doubles as a baking dish and server as well!

1 small-to-medium pumpkin
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 to 2 tablespoons margarine or cooking oil
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 4-ounce can mushrooms, drained
1 10 3/4-ounce can cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cups cooked rice

Cut off the pumpkin top and clean out all seeds and stringy pulp. Use a black marking pen to draw an appropriate jack-o’-lantern face on the pumpkin. Sauté onions in margarine or oil in a large skillet. Add meat and brown. Drain off grease. Add soy sauce, sugar, mushrooms, and soup. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes. Add cooked rice and simmer an additional 5 minutes. Pour mixture into pumpkin. Replace pumpkin top.

Place the filled pumpkin on a baking sheet and bake in a 350° F. oven for 1 hour. The pumpkin itself should be tender when removed from the oven. Place on a serving platter and cover with a large napkin. After the blessing, select someone to uncover the special dish. Serve the pumpkin as a vegetable along with the delicious meat mixture.
Jack-O-Lantern Bundt You’ll need three cake mixes and two bundt pans for this decorative cake. White cakes tinted with orange food coloring or dark-colored cakes work best. Thoroughly grease and flour the pans so cakes slide out easily. Prepare the cake mixes according to package directions. Pour half the batter into each pan, and bake as usual.

When cakes are done, remove from pans and cool. Cut and remove the rounded tops from each cake so that the top edges are flat. Place one cake, cut side up, on the serving platter. Place the second cake on top, cut sides together, matching ribs to form a jack-o’-lantern.

With frosting or gumdrops placed in toothpicks, make the pumpkin’s face. Fill the cake’s center hole with plastic wrap or waxed paper to hold the stem. To make the stem, blend 3 ounces cream cheese (at room temperature) with 3 cups powdered sugar, and tint with green food coloring. Mold into stem and leaf shapes, and attach to the top of cake with the stem set in the center hole.

Ghost Pumpkin Pie This ghostly figure transforms your favorite pumpkin pie into a Halloween treat. Use whipped topping in a pressurized can, or place regular whipped cream in a cake decorating bag. Outline the ghost’s form on top of the pumpkin pie with whipped topping, and then fill in the outline. Spread the topping with a knife to make smooth.
Jack-O-Lantern Sandwiches These Halloween sandwiches will delight young and old alike. Use a dark bread such as rye or pumpernickel. Cut jack-o’-lantern faces in one slice of bread for each sandwich. Make sandwiches with desired filling. Place a slice of cheese over the filling, and position pumpkin face on top. This sandwich will add a special touch to a Halloween party or lunch.
Orange-O-Lanterns These tiny jack-o’-lanterns make good party favors or treats. Decorate oranges by drawing jack-o’-lantern faces on each with dark marking pens. If you’re using orange-o’-lanterns as favors, let each guest decorate his or her own.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
These crunchy treats are nutritious as well as tasty. You’ll need:
2 cups pumpkin seeds, well washed
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
1 teaspoon salt

Boil seeds in a small amount of salted water for 10 minutes, and then dry on paper towels. Combine Worcestershire sauce, butter or margarine, and salt. Pour mixture over seeds, and stir until seeds are well coated. Bake on a baking sheet for 1 to 2 hours in a 225° F. oven, stirring often. Seeds should be crisp and not burned.

Friday, October 15, 2010

West Park Nampa Cross Country Meet 10/13/2010

My pictures turned out pretty bad. The sun was bright and the contrast was hard to get. I really, really want a nice camera.. Maybe Santa will bring me one.

The race was in Nampa at the "West Park". Since I am not a native to the Boise/Nampa area ... I had NO idea where this park was. I google searched it and thought I found the address and printed a map. Well, I got lost. I ended up at the Nampa Recreation Center. I even forgot my cell phone so I couldn't call Brady and speak to one of the coaches to help me find the way. I stopped in and they printed me a new map and gave me directions - they were great.

I was really running late and thought I would miss the race. I missed the girls race, but made it in time for the boys race - yea!

The boys were waiting around for the last girl to finish. The boys were really encouraging. When the girl came into view the whole group of boys started to clap for her. I thought that was really nice.
 Last girl in and the race began. Here they goooooooooo!
 There they went....
 There goes Brady... Of course I'm cheering and cheering that I forget to catch the photo ... well, almost.
 Bad lighting - but I'll put it in here. There is Brady ... RUN!
 Heading for the finish.
Great pictures from Cherie and her really nice camera. (Camera envy) I was surprised to get these photos from Cherie because I didn't see her at the race. I didn't get to visit with her - which was a bummer. However, thanks a bunch for some awesome pictures.
His time was 20:25. He still hasn't broke the 19 minute mark. Only one more race to go. I hope he will finish strong at districts next week.


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