Photo – Concentration

Using scissors is serious business.


Home School – Week 1

Last week was our first week of home school, so our “first day of school” pictures look a little different this year. The week definitely had its ups and downs, but we all survived and plan on carrying on this week.





What kinds of things do we do at school? We fish for letters.


We make letters out of our snacks.


We paint with water on the patio. The only downside? In Louisiana’s August heat, your art disappears way too quickly.



And the dog tries to drink your “paint.”





On other days, we spell words with our snack. These Scrabble Cheese-Its are super fun! I just wish they came in a bigger box. They only last about two days at our house.






Since Neely was working on learning the letter A this week, we made apple print paintings.




*gasp* My poor table! Next time, I will be smarter and cover it up.



We read lots of books. We were A-heavy for Neely’s sake. It isn’t in the picture, but we kicked off the week with all the letters and read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Great book!



And on Friday, to celebrate our progress, our success in learning the letter A, and surviving the week, we made an apple crumb pie.





The best part about it for me? I get to take pictures of all the fun stuff my kids are doing at school. πŸ™‚


Found Photos – July


I took these photos when we were home visiting family last month. I’m disappointed in myself for forgetting about them. What a fun day! There are more, but these all just belonged together. πŸ™‚





Eat – Potato Leek Soup

Who else saw 2009’s Julie & Julia and went straight to Amazon to order this book? Because I’m totally guilty. Even though poor Julie nearly had a nuclear meltdown trying to cook her way through it, the movie still made me feel like I could master French cooking. Do you know what else I’m totally guilty of? Not even cracking the book open until three years later. Oops!

I don’t know what suddenly possessed me to thumb through it yesterday, but I’m glad I did. I found a simple recipe to attempt first, made it for dinner last night, and I have totally boosted my own confidence.

What did I make? Potato Leek Soup. Or if you’re interested in the French, Potage Parmentier. It is seriously delicious. I will be eating the leftovers for lunch all week, and I am excited!

Here’s what you do…

Dice up 1 pound peeled potatoes, and slice 1 pound of leeks.

Let me just take a moment to say, “Mmm…leeks…” I had never touched a leek until a couple February’s ago when my better half and I got snowed in with four kids in the house. We made the best chicken pot pie ever for dinner one night, and it called for leeks. My mind was forever changed. It wasn’t that I didn’t like leeks, I just wasn’t familiar with them. Now, I think they’re super great. πŸ˜‰

Moving right along…

Put your leeks and potatoes in a big stock pot, add 1 tablespoon salt (I used sea salt), and cover with 2 quarts of water. Partially cover the pot, and simmer for about 45 minutes. The vegetables should be tender.

The next step says to mash the vegetables with a fork, or run the soup through a food mill. I pulled out the old immersion blender. This little gadget may have been the best $20 I ever spent. I don’t know why I put off buying one for so long, but making soups has been a breeze ever since.

Once the soup is nice and smooth, season it to taste with salt and pepper. Mine didn’t need any salt, but I did throw in some ground black pepper.

Julia Child’s recipe has some variations you can choose from to finish the soup off, and I chose to add 4 to 6 tablespoons heavy cream.

Mix that all in. Mmm… The other option she gave was butter, which I’m sure would be equally delicious.

She also recommends garnishing the soup with minced parsley or chives, but I had neither. Please excuse it for looking a little bit boring in the bowl up there. Pretty or not, it was soooo good. This soup is rich, hearty, and filling. I will definitely be making it again.

Is this the beginning of me stockpiling soup recipes for cold, North Dakota winter nights? Probably.

Race for the Cure / Thirty-One Giveaway

I haven’t posted much about my running lately. Why? I haven’t been running nearly as much. The kids have been out of school, and without something specific to train for, I’ve mostly been running just for fun and for exercise. But I’ve finally got a race coming up on the calendar. I’m getting one more in before we move. It’s our local Race for the Cure. I’m posting about it here, because I’d love you to help me fundraise for my team.

As numbers are purchased, I will update this chart. I am hoping you can help me fill the whole chart! Please help my team reach our fundraising goal.

Eat – Trixie Treats


We’ve got a new favorite treat around here…Aidan has named them Trixie Treats! Appropriate, since they are, essentially, Rice Krispie treats made from Trix. The original recipe can be found here. My slight adaptation is below.

Trixie Treats

4 tablespoons butter

3 cups mini marshmallows

10 cups Trix cereal


Melt butter and marshmallows, either in the microwave or in a saucepan. Add cereal, and stir to combine. Spread evenly into a GREASED 9×13 pan. When the mixture has set, cut into squares and eat!

We think they’re delicious. πŸ™‚


Home School?

Here we are, only eight days away from the start of public school here in Louisiana, and I am preparing to…home school. For anyone who knows me, I’m sure you never expected those words to come out of my mouth. In fact, you might expect me to be struck by a bolt of lightning, because I am fairly certain that on more than one occasion I have sworn I would never, every home school my children.

Before I make anyone angry, I have nothing against home schooling. I’m just fairly certain that I don’t have the knowledge or the patience for it long-term. But with a move coming up in just two short months, it seemed senseless to start my first-grader here, let him make friends and become attached to a new teacher, only to move him.

In the interim, we will be having school at home. Of course, I love school supplies and books and such, so I have probably gone a little crazy for just two months’ worth of home learning. Better safe than sorry, though. Right?

We may be handling Neely’s preschool lessons for the entire year at home, though. I am not entirely confident that I’ll be able to find a preschool class with an opening for her once we arrive in North Dakota. Pray for me.