Thursday, July 21, 2011

Cooking Fun

What a fun day! Can't you see the excitement in their faces?


This is my new haircut. It is growing on me.


Anna is learning to dance through an online dance site. She would have

done this all day if I let her.


Julia made a triple batch of cookies last week. One batch went in the freezer for us to take to Ukraine-- the other two batches were for eating. My instructions-- hands off the cookies in the freezer. John was the first to sneak-- Adam was the last. One of his siblings snitched on him-- half the cookies were gone by then. I was not happy. My solution was for him to bake more.

So he did.


I made Russian Coltyetes. Annalyn's exact words, "This meat is the best in the world!"


We had so much fun making them today.


Annalyn crushed corn flakes and Sveta mixed up the meat.


Rachel grated the potatoes.

I coated the meat patties.


Galina formed the patties.


I fried them up.


They turned out delicious. I'll share the recipe when I get back.


Julia wanted to play pirate.


Rachel was just being goofy!

Sometimes it can be so much fun cooking in the kitchen!


Julia shoving a donut in Galina's mouth.


Does this at all remind you from a pose in Napoleon Dynamite?



Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Beach

It was a beautiful day to go to the beach.  No sharks, but despite sunscreen we all got sun kissed.
John so enjoyed boogie boarding with the kids.  He was like one big kid himself!
Caleb stayed true to his word-- not even one toe touched the water. 
It was fun digging in the sand. The boys found this jumping sand crab that was really cool.  I showed Jonny how easy it was to dig for sand crabs and find one virtually every time.  The key is to dig in the sand as soon as a wave recedes.
John and I
Paul loved the ocean!  Now that this was his third time and he knew what to expect he was all smiles!
Alex pretty much sat here and played in the sand the whole time-- I'll tell you why in a minute.
For lunch we had PB and J sandwiches with juice, granola bars, and corn nuts.

The girls ruled the water!  Galina, Julia, Sveta, and Annalyn jumped waves for hours!  Poor Galina got a pounding-- a few times she came out crying because the waves had knocked her down but with determination she went right back in.  They had a blast!
Alex kept getting to close to the water.  Since he often didn't hear us telling him to back away we all took turns physically moving him away from the water.  Still.... in an instance he went into the water up to his calves and a wave came and as it retreated back into the ocean it took one of his crutches with it.
I was not happy.  John walked the shallow part of the water following the current but he never did find it.  The upset irrational side of me wanted Alex to be in a timeout for the rest of the day-- afterall he hadn't listened, he compromised his safety in the process, and replacing crutches is expensive when insurance won't pay for another pair-- but as he inched his way on his bottom back to the water, I softened.  It was hard to stay mad.  I let it go, and everyone including him and I ended up having a great time at the beach.
As the tide was coming in, a wave came in and brought a gush of  water a few inches deep.  We didn't notice it because we were packing up.  All of our stuff got wet, John's cell phone is toast.
Definitely a trip we won't soon forget.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Move Over Owls!

Move over owls--- the frogs are here!  We leave in one week-- please consider partnering with us for Ukraine as you bid on this one of a kind tote bag great for books, diapers, or even a purse!  The detail is great and much work went into this bag, as God shows us that he pays great detail to our lives.  Besides... I now enjoy this new found craft of mine-- I didn't at first.  Amazing how God works on us like that.  The bidding will start at $30-- and will end on Friday, July 8th at noon!  Sorry but I can only mail in the US.

Thank you ahead of time!

Congratulations!

The raffle is over! Congrats to Talley Images, Leah Wentzel, and Judith Martin! Thank you so much for your show of support! Please email which item you would like me to send you from the raffle!

Monday, July 4, 2011

An Unforgettable Family Outing and Another Owl Bag

Yea! Jen from Texas was the highest bidder on this pink owl bag! Thank you so much for your contribution. Please email me your address.

Onto the next bag that I finished late last night. Here is a bright turquoise and green owl bag! Just like with the other owl bag, the bidding starts at $30 and all money will go towards the love offering for River of Joy. Please spread the word. The bidding ends at noon PST on July 6th! I can't mail outside of the US- I'm sorry. Thank you ahead of time! The first camp at River of Joy ended a few days ago-- it went very well! New believers-- praise the Lord! That is what it is all about!


I read in a magazine that Orange County has a park with a giant orange hot air balloon that people can ride for free! Free--- is right up our alley-- throw in dinner and you have a great family outing! Or so I thought.

As we drove through the park, John and I thought it looked empty-- perhaps the park was closed Fourth of July weekend. Nope! But it certainly wasn't packed. We were early and it never crossed our mind that we wouldn't be able to ride the balloon. But we were wrong. Too bad we didn't know that registration starts an hour and a half before the first launch and that though the balloon holds 30 at a time-- that is only the case under perfect conditions. We stuck around to watch the first launch-- with 11 people aboard. I was bummed.

But... we did ride the free carousel. As it began to go round, Paul was immediately concerned because his horse didn't go up and down. His brothers horses went up and down-- how come his didn't? We decided to ride the carousel a few more times so Paul would get the full experience!

Now he is happy!

Alex had a blast! No tears like last year!

Dennis loved it too! I guess all I have is big boys now!
The girls had fun too!



Jonny and Andrew liked that there wasn't just horses to ride on but zebras and mermaids and lions too!

On the way home, we stopped at one In and Out burger place. It was mainly a drive thru and it was hard to feel welcome in the restaurant when maximum capacity was 14. As I stood in line I noticed that the soda machine was behind the counter and there was no ketchup dispenser-- "John let's go to a different In and Out." Yes we got back in the car. We found another one on the the way home but it had only a walk up window. A true In and Out I guess! Anyway, we finally went to the In and Out that was close to John's work and has a huge sit down area inside the restaurant. I had taken everyone's order before hand and was amazed at how well they accommodated our order. I asked for an extra cup to split Dennis and Alex's shake and they said they could split it for us. I asked for a plastic knife to cut their burger in half and they said they can do that too! Who knew! I was impressed. You want to know the coolest thing? We ran into people we knew! What a small world after all!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Family and Friends

Here are pictures from the previous weekend when we traveled up north to visit family and attend a wedding reception.

John got this picture of all the kids while I was busy visiting away with old friends.

As a Mom-- I yearn to see more of this.

Alex was so happy that day!

My long time friend, role model, mentor--- Grandma Marge. Oh how I love her.

Adam was asked to join an impromptu jam session.

Remember my little ol' Grandpa? Well he is still alive and well. My Mom brought him over to visit with us.

All of the kids got to meet my Grandpa-- their Great Grandpa. It is quite an accomplishment since three of them never got to meet my Dad.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Pink Owl Bag

I can't believe I finished another owl bag today!  I stayed up till 1am. blanket stitching every single one of the leaves as to keep me motivated to keep pressing forward in the morning.  I'm glad I did because I finally figured out my groove-- and I must say that I rejoiced... enjoyed.. and... worked my little heart out!

 Colossians 3:23-24
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

I am still fundraising for River of Joy's love offering for their next building project, and since the other raffle that I am doing is not going very well, my prayer is that these owl bags will be more successful.

The starting bid is $30.  Please leave a comment, and please remember that the money is going to a great cause-- helping orphans in Ukraine through River of  Joy's ministry.  The bidding will end July 3 at 8pm PST.  Thank you ahead of time!