Month in Review {January}

As we sit here on the last day of the first month of the year, I was reflecting back on 1) where the days went, 2) how they went so fast, 3) how I actually stuck to my “evaluate” resolution (y’all, I went to Homegoods this week and bought NOTHING!), and 4) how I’ve done nothing but make Disney books for the last two weeks and thus have no new projects to share, I thought I’d highlight the top five of posts of January based on your page views!

Honey Does: DIY Flat Screen TV Cabinet

January 2013 029 copy


100 Days of School {Free Printable}

January 2013 387 copy


The Boys Bath Before & After

January 2013 434 copy


I Love {House Portraits}

January 2013 006 copy


Dixie Delights Disney World

September 2011 797 copy


Speaking of Disney World, this is the last day to get your personalized Disney Signature Books if you’re going in February.  I’ll definitely list them again for those going later in the year! 

November 2012 653 copy

I’d say the year is off to a pretty perfect start!



A Few Gems from the Doctor

I feel like a trip to the doctor with two children is some sort of nefarious parenting test – one where doctors and nurses secretly conspire to see how the unsuspecting and likely harried mom handles her offspring while locked in a germ laden three-by-three cube with nothing but a spinning stool with wheels and a bench from which a fall would be catastrophic.  They probably sit back and watch our every move on surveillance cameras and write notations in cryptic shorthand on their strange little tablet devices as we try to tame our beasts in our nicest possible mean voice.  I really should ask my childhood pediatrician friend KRB about all this…

As for yesterday, the littles’ seemingly innocuous annual trip to the doctor ended with me not knowing whether to laugh or cry.  They were clearly out to rattle and shame me.  Here are a few gems from our visit:

When the nurse tells the boys to strip down to their undies John yells “OH  NOOOOO!” I’m thinking he is just embarrassed for her to see.  But no, he continues “I think I’ve had these same undies on like all week.  Definitely all week and they haven’t even been washed.”  I assure you this is not the case.  I mean, y’all know me.  Well, not really know me, but surely you know me well enough to know that I bathe my children and wash their clothes.  We put on clean undies and clean clothes every.single.day.  I mean, unless it’s PJ day.  But six out of seven days the child has on clean underwear.  Cross my heart.

And it just got better from there.  Like when John claimed he didn’t know his age or grade in school (I duly professed his brilliance as only a mother can) and when the baby danced Gangem style when asked to hop on one leg (I feigned ignorance.) 

Oh… I also loved when Dr H asked the baby about his favorite activity in school – W: centers; DR: which one?; W: legos; DR: what do you build?; W: GUNS!!! (and he proceeds to pretend shoot the doctor)

Much to my surprise and relief, Dr H proclaimed them “normal and healthy based on everything seen today.” (Which leads me to believe he must see some truly bewildering creatures in his day.)

To top it all off, the baby was due for vaccinations.   Is it just me, or do you hate having to hold your child down and look into their eyes as a nurse just out of their line of sight sticks them in the leg with an insane number of shots?!?!  It has always broken my heart and I dread it every year.  This year, the baby screamed out in sheer terror “I WANT MY MOMMY!!!!” and he jerked his head up looking startled to find ME there holding him down.  He asked me countless times after why I hurt him so bad.  Bless his heart. 

Just like that I forgave them for acting like complete dolts and promised the baby anything he wanted for supper.  He chose hot dogs and s’mores roasted on the porch and, once again, all was well with the W family :-).

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Next year I’m totally going to rehearse before we go and pay for good honest answers…thank the lord this is a once yearly event.  :-)


M&M’s Around the World + Last Call Disney Books

The PCP has been learning the seven continents and five oceans in school and his teacher sent home a darling game to reinforce their studies at home.  So, after supper the other night I doled out m&m’s and we challenged each other’s luck and geography for dessert! 

You’ll need:
- 12 markers (we used mini m&m’s) for each player
- a dice
- a copy of the world map for each player (the one we used is here)

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Each number rolled matches a part of the map:
1 – South America or North America
2 – Europe or Asia
3 – Africa, Antarctica or Australia
4 – Atlantic Ocean or Pacific Ocean
5 – Arctic Ocean or Southern Ocean
6 – Indian Ocean

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Honey and I both acted a little ignorant so that the PCP could help us figure out what was what on the map :-)
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And while the PCP won by covering up all twelve points before anyone else, we all had a sweet treat at the end of the game!!
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LAST CALL I'm only taking orders for the personalized Disney Signature Books through the 31st so order now if you know you're going to Disney!!  I will try to do another offer at least once a month from here on out but I'm not sure when that will be in February.

November 2012 653 copy

We're off to the doctor this afternoon for annual checkups.  Wish me luck... these visits always seem to go haywire :-)


Medieval Times Atlanta

Last night we donned our armor and carried our swords off to experience the pageantry and thrills of Medieval Times inside the King’s impressive 11th century Atlanta castle (that just so happens to be attached to a very 21st century mall, but I digress). 
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From the get go, the littles were completely awestruck.  In royal fashion, we were welcomed to the castle by the King and Princess themselves.

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We were delighted to be transported back to the middle ages once inside the castle.  We received our crowns and knight color (blue) and then bee-lined straight for the impressive fire to secure a table right at the hearth .
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While waiting to be ushered into the arena, we enjoyed watching the knighting ceremonies, visiting with the owl, moseying around the gift shop and exploring the castle. 

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Finally, it was time for the King’s noble guests to be escorted in for the dinner and tournament!!

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We were beyond thrilled to find ourselves assigned to the front row of the blue knight’s fans!

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And before we knew it, maids and wenches were bringing our four course feast and the show had commenced!  The fare was plentiful (and surprisingly okay) and the littles thoroughly enjoyed gobbling it up with nothing but their hands.  After all, there were no forks or spoons in Medieval times!

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As the six armor clad knights and their valiant horses galloped into the arena the littles eyes grew wide and I knew we were in for a memorable evening.  We faithfully cheered for our knight as he competed in thrilling games on horseback and engaged in combat of lance and shield…all on a noble quest to become CHAMPION!

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I won’t be a wench and spoil your show by telling you which night became champion.  But the blue knight won me over with a pink carnation and was a veritable hero in the littles eyes :-)

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If you go:
  • We attended a 5pm Sunday show and it was only about half full.  The castle doors open at 3:45 and when we arrived at about 3:40 there was already a line.  Unless you pay for VIP seating (we did not), you will want to be there as early as possible since tables are assigned on a first come first serve basis.
  • Front row seats generally require a VIP upgrade but they will fill them with other guests if not sold out.  We knew this before hand which is why we booked a Sunday show and were there when the doors opened.  And it completely paid off when we were ushered to the front row!!!
  • There is not a bad seat in the stadium-style arena.  I read online that some seats in some castles were partially blocked with columns, but this didn’t seem to be a problem in the Atlanta castle. 
  • If you arrive early you’ll have about an hour to wait before the show.  We secured a table by the fire and then took turns exploring with the littles.  There aren’t a ton of tables, so we were happy to have one early on.
  • Once inside, there are loads of little gift type things that the littles will want – we purchased our armor and shields at the Dollar Tree for $1 a piece.  They were selling lots of light up things at the castle, so you might want to throw a few glow sticks in your buggy at Dollar Tree as well.
  • It’s pretty hard to get out of your seats once in the arena.  Make sure to take the littles to the potty before the show.
  • My crew gobbled up the food and loved eating with their hands.  They give you one napkin and one wipe.
  • They only serve water, sweet tea and Pepsi (barf-o-rama) with dinner.  They come in large mugs filled to the brim and we had to drink half of the baby’s down before he could wield it on his own.  If you have a little one you might consider bringing a sippy cup or juice box or only having the mug half filled. 
  • After the show the knights line up against the bar for pictures and autographs. 

It was an outing made for boys and I’m SO glad Santa gave us the tickets for Christmas :-)


A Decadent Game Day Snack {Blue Cheese Chips}

Given my first-born-type-A-perpetual-rule-follower personality traits, I very rarely stray from the precise measurements and ingredients of a recipe.  I’m creative in plenty of other areas of my life, but NOT in my cooking.  So creating this recipe and the fact that it is actually super delish will likely come as a surprise to you and me both.  I’m calling this the marriage of an idea seen on Pinterest and Daddy-O’s divine Gentleman’s Wedge dinner salad.

Amanda’s Blue Cheese Chips
(I put my  name in the recipe because Sister has a recipe called Sister’s Butternut Squash Soup and I’ve always been extraordinarily jealous when the fam says things like “Oh, I can’t wait for Thanksgiving and Sister’s Butternut Squash Soup” or “Sister’s Butternut Squash Soup is the best thing I’ve had in ages.”  Allow me that indulgence, y’all…)

January 2013 364 copy

Blue Cheese Sauce
- 1 cup mayo (I always use Dukes)
- 1 cup sour cream
- 4oz. blue cheese crumbles
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- 1 T. worchestershire sauce

The Rest
- bag of Kettle Chips
- two diced roma tomatoes
- 4 sliced green onions
- 4 slices bacon cooked and crumbled
- additional blue cheese crumbles (my container had 5 oz. so I had some left)

1. Make the sauce - Mix everything in a bowl, cover and chill. You’ll have enough left over for a salad or a second batch of chips!
2. Preheat your oven to 300.
3. Line a pan with foil.  Dump your bag of chips on the pan.  Drizzle with blue cheese sauce.
4. Bake for 5-10 minutes or until chips and sauce is warm.
5. Top with tomatoes, green onions, bacon and additional cheese crumbles.
6. Stand back as your friends ooh and ahh and the chips disappear while quietly being super proud of your accomplishment.



100th Day of School {Free Printable}

The PCP’s class celebrated the 100th day of school with a day full of fun and games (and I’m guessing at least a little learning)!  They did 100 piece puzzles, 100 themed word searches, activities and centers, enjoyed the annual 2nd grade dress-like-you’re-100-years-old parade, AND participated in a 100th day themed guessing game.

100th Day Bottle of Fun
Each student filled an empty 20-oz. bottle with 100 like items of their choice – and it was no surprise that the PCP chose Legos.  The bottles were then sealed in paper lunch sacks and sent in with three clues about their contents.  They played a guessing game to guess what was in each bottle.  FUN!! 

January 2013 391 copy

January 2013 394 copy

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Download the bottle label here - it could really be used for anything! 

100th Day Necklaces
The PCP couldn’t wait to make 100 Day Fruit Loop necklaces for his classmates again this year!  In fact, the whole family got in on the fun (can you guess just how much fun Honey is having??)!!  The printable tag is below – one page for kindergarten and one page generic - and you can see last year’s post for all the details.

January 2013 387 copy  
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January 2013 384 copy
Download the bag topper here - 100 Days of School Tag 

The PCP reported back that it was one of his (albeit many) “best days ever”! 

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He’s 100 days smarter and we’re 100 days closer to SuMmEr!!

PS. Lest you think the PCP has all the fun, I assure you that the baby is the one truly living the life.  Lounging his days away with mommy tending to every whim and anticipating every need.  Case in point: luxuriating in his bear sleeping bag and watching Disney channel while I prepare his “third breakfast” of the morning :-)

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