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Monday, April 30, 2012

A Mother's Day Bouquet That Won't Die in 3 Days...Promise!....

It's hard to believe that May is just a day away and with May comes Mother's Day.  I am sharing a craft idea with you that the girls made last year. 

Please excuse the cluttered fridge.  I'll admit, I don't have a pretty fridge, but it keeps the food cold and that is good enough for me!

First paint your child(s) hands.  This always includes a lot of giggles...
Then have them make a hand print.  Make sure they spread their fingers... 
Next, paint popsicle sticks green... 
Once dry, cut the hand prints out like so... 
Cut a rectangle, square, oval, star...whatever floats your boat....out of paper.  I used scrapbook paper.  Since I don't have time to scrapbook anymore, I have to find ways to use it!... 
Laminate the hand prints and flower pot.  I just bought sheets from Staples.

Glue the hand print to the popsicle stick... 
Glue them all to the back of the flower pot.  Hot glue works best. 
Glue magnets on a clothespin and glue it to the back of the flower pot... 
Voila!  And there is my cluttered fridge again!... 

And there you have it!  A bouquet that won't die in three days and has tiny hand prints that you will treasure forever!

As always, use care when handling a hot glue gun.  I do not recommend letting your child do it by themselves unless you feel they are old enough.  If that is the case, then use only under adult supervision.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Marshmallow Tree...

Earlier this spring I was pushing Mel on the swings when she said, "Look Mommy!  A marshmallow tree."
When you look at the photo, you will see a flowering pear tree.
But to a three year old it's a marshmallow tree! 

I could have corrected her and told her there is no such thing as a marshmallow tree then explained to her that it was a flowering pear tree, but that would have taken the fun out of it!

I feel imagination is one of the greatest things, so why ruin it?

So, until she figures it out for herself, we have a marshmallow tree growing in the backyard! 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Flat Aggie...

Sarah from The House That Ag Built is teaching her 1st grade students all about agriculture through a doll that they created named Flat Aggie.  She is based on the book Flat Stanley.

Flat Aggie came to visit us last week all the way from California!

B took her for a short ride on her 4-wheeler, but decided that Aggie should really have a helmet!
We started planting corn a day before Aggie's arrival, so we took her to the field to check out the planter.  Buckle up!... 

She was surprised to see that the corn wasn't yellow, but red.  We explained that that is because it is treated with special ingredients that taste and smell nasty to bugs so they won't eat all the seed... 
Next she got to check out some of the tractors... 
 and the sprayer.  We spray the weeds in our fields so they don't take all the water and nutrients away from the corn and soybeans...
Next up was a visit with the cattle.  We raise beef cattle which are very different from dairy.  Beef cattle produce meat.  Dairy cattle are raised primarily for milk...
These grain bins are where we store our grain before it is taken to the grain elevator where it is sold... 
 The big hay bales...
In the summer, when the corn is still green, we chop it and this is called silage.  We store the silage in these bags to be fed to the cattle throughout the year... 
This is called a silage mixer.  It mixes silage with ground corn, hay and supplements which makes a yummy mixture that the cattle love!... 

The cattle are given mineral blocks to lick which provides them with a ton of vitamins and minerals... 

We hope that Flat Aggie enjoyed her visit and that her class enjoys hearing all about our farm.  Maybe she will come back to visit us during harvest!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Maple Cookies...

When we stop by our Amish neighbors home, they always seem to have cookies to offer us.  Most of the time they are some type of maple flavored deliciousness covered in icing.  I keep forgetting to ask for the recipe and I ran across one in a Gooseberry Patch cookbook that looked very similar so I just had to give it a whirl.

It was a very close comparison.  Brad said they needed more icing and I have to agree, I think I may double the icing recipe next time.  No joke!  I prefer more icing than cookie!

Maple Cookies


1/2 c. butter flavored shortening
1 c. brown sugar, packed
1/2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 c. sour cream
1T. maple flavoring
2 3/4 c. flour
1 t. salt
1/2 t. baking soda

Maple Butter Glaze:

1/2 c. butter
2 c. powdered sugar
2 t. maple flavoring
3 T. hot water

1. Combine shortening, sugars, and eggs thoroughly; stir in sour cream and one tablespoon maple flavoring.

2. Mix flour, slat and baking soda together in a separate bowl.

3. Blend into sugar mixture.

4. Drop by tablespoonfuls and bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes.

5. Cool completely and make the icing.

6. Glaze: heat butter until golden brown.

7. Mix in powdered sugar and 2 tsp. maple flavoring.

8. Gradually add water until glaze is smooth.

9. Spread over cooled cookies.


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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Easter 2012...

Our Easter weekend began on Friday night when we colored eggs.  During a cold January day I came across a pin on Pinterest that used Kool-Aid to dye Easter eggs.  I pinned it and was determined to try it.  Well, the week of Easter came and I felt a little lazy so on Thursday I headed to the store to buy the Paas egg dying kit.  They were completely sold out.  It's too much work to strap kids in and out of carseats while going from store to store to find one item.  So, I grabbed some Kool-Aid packets and called it good enough.

The Kool-Aid worked great!  Just mix a packet with about 2/3 cup of water and voila...instant color.

No nasty smelling vinegar.
No more waiting on the tablets to dissolve while trying to remain patient as the kids ask you over and over if it is time to start yet.

I added a little bit of orange to the yellow and a little blue raspberry to the purple per the pinners suggestion.  Blue was my favorite color of them all! 
Mel preferred to dunk hers immediately.

B preferred to draw on hers first... 
Since we didn't have the kit, we didn't have the egg dunking tool...for lack of a better word.  Brad whipped one up from a clothes hanger.  He's handy like that! ;0) 

Saturday was the egg hunt at our church.  This was the first time in 3 years that it hasn't been raining.  When it rains, they have it inside and that makes things crazy!

B and Mel are in different age groups so Brad always goes with Mel.  Those two are inseparable!
I stick with B.  She is in the blue sweatshirt... 

Easter morning they woke earlier than usual.
B was up so early that I didn't even get to see her go through her goodies.  I was pretty disappointed, but she tried to reenact it.

 All dressed and ready for church...
 Mel did not want to have her picture taken, so I did what any good mom does and told B to grab her around her neck and hold her there.  She listened and this was as good as it got!...
 After church we enjoyed a wonderful meal at Brad's parents.  The girls were spoiled with even more candy.
 We attempted a family photo and once again Mel wouldn't cooperate.
I hope you all had a wonderful Easter!


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