Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Here are some pictures from our adventures in trick-or-treating.  Enjoy!


Tuesday, October 25, 2011


FlorajenWhen I went to my old high school’s career fair, I handed out probiotics.  Do you know what probiotics are?  I asked that to each student that came up and they didn’t know either.  With cold and flu season upon us I thought I would fill you in.

Probiotics are pills that contain bacteria that are good for you, otherwise known as beneficial.  Your gut is filled with both good and bad bacteria in a delicate balance to keep you feeling well.  When you have a bacterial infection you might be given a course of antibiotics which kill the bad bacteria that are causing the illness, but sometimes they also kill the beneficial bacteria.  In this case you will need to re-colonize your gut.  Beneficial bacteria can also influence your immune system to help fight infection. 

You are ingesting probiotics when you eat yogurt.  The bacteria in yogurt is usually Lactobacillus and/or Bifidobacterium.  Both of these can also be found in probiotics but at a much higher dose. 

I started taking probiotics when I was on a course of antibiotics earlier this year.  I also took them at the first onset of a cold and it kicked my cold to the curb in 4 days.  Usually my colds last 2 weeks, so this was amazing.  I started feeling a cold coming on this week, so I took one probiotic pill Monday morning, another Monday night and again Tuesday night and I’m already feeling so much better. 

If you are interested in getting some probiotics you want to make sure you get the kind that are stored in a refrigerator, not off the shelf.  They may also be pricey ($12-15) but I feel they are worth the money.  I take 1/week when I’m feeling normal and 1/day when I’m under the weather.  The kind I take contains Lactobacillus acidophilus at over 20 billion bacteria/pill.  This is equal to 10 cups of yogurt.  If you have any questions just leave me a comment.  Here’s to good health!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pumpkin time

We invited some new neighbor friends over who have a son about the same age as Jake and a little girl about 9 months old.  You may remember me talking about them here.  The boys played (mostly well) together while the parents gutted out some pumpkins.  I forgot to take pictures of the neighbor’s pumpkins, but they were all really fun and a little scary. 

We used a pumpkin gutter that I picked up from Walmart for $6.  You attach it to the end of a drill and then have at it.  Jamie was on gutting duty and I was on carving duty.  The boys are a still a bit too young to use the pumpkin knives or a drill. 


One pumpkin didn’t have as thick of skin as the others and Jamie accidently poked right though it!  Oops!  So, I had to improvise and make a huge mouth. 


Jake wanted his to have a sad face with circle and an oval nose.


I wrote out Boo on another one. 


For the last one I just made slits down the entire pumpkin which I think makes it look really cool and a little sophisticated when lit.


Have you carved any pumpkins yet this year?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Have you ever been so angry about something that it makes you shake?  That is what I am feeling right now.  I’m not going to say what I’m angry about (don’t worry, it’s not about Jamie, Jake or my 4 followers) but I will say that I’m trying really hard to be the bigger person.  I know you should never let anger fester, but I also don’t want to respond to the issue while I am feeling like this.  Hopefully I can get a good night’s rest, think about it and respond when I’m more settled.

It’s late, I need to go to bed, so I’ll probably start reading our next book club book, Little Bee, to clear my mind a bit. 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

15 Year High School Reunion

Last night I went to my 15 year high school reunion.  It was a joint reunion with the 5, 10, 20, 30, 35, 40, 45 & 50th reunions.  The 25th reunion is planning their own for the next weekend. 

I was a little disappointed in the lack of people in attendance this year.  With a graduating class near 400 only 25 from our class were there last night.  The 50 year reunion had over 100 there last night!  Even so, I had a great time talking & dancing with classmates I haven’t seen in quite a while.  It was held in the field house which was built after we graduated and is a great addition to the school.

15yr 002

We took a tour of the old stomping grounds.  Mr. Claussen was our guide and took us past the old gym which is being converted to a theater for the arts department. 

15yr 003

15yr 004

15yr 001

We ended the night at a nearby bar.  We are all going to try and help with the 20th reunion to make it even better. 

15yr 008

Monday, October 10, 2011

Peach Pie

peach pie1A coworker brought in a case of peaches last week and split it with others.  I was fortunate enough to get 10 of them and decided to make some peach pies to share with everyone.  The recipe is pretty easy and can also be used with apricots or other fruit.

Peach Pie
Double crust – store bought or homemade:
2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup shortening
6-7 tbsp cold water
Mix together flour and salt, then cut in the shortening until pieces are the size of peas. Add 1 tbsp water at a time gently tossing with a fork and push against the side of bowl. Repeat until all moistened and form a ball. Roll dough from center to edge until 12” in diameter.

6 cups peaches peeled & sliced (approx 6-8 medium)
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp lemon juice
Heat oven to 425°F. Make bottom crust and brush with egg white; set aside. Mix sugar, flour and cinnamon in large bowl. Stir in peaches and lemon juice. Fill bottom crust with peaches. Cover with top pastry, crimp edges to seal and cut slits in top. Brush top of crust with milk and sprinkle with a little sugar. Cover edges with 2-3 inch strips of foil to prevent burning. Bake 30 minutes, then remove foil strips and bake an additional 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Cool on wire rack at least 2 hours.

peach pie2

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Halloween Printable

The big thing these days on crafting blogs are printables.  They are printable signs that you can download and print off yourself.  Some put them in picture frames and others make cute signs with them.

Printable examples

Recently, I saw a cute Halloween printable, but it wasn’t a free download.  However, using my skills I created my own with PowerPoint, clip art and basic shapes.  It turned out really cute and I am sharing it here with all of you for FREE!


Broom Parking


If you would like a copy just leave a comment with your email and I will send it your way as a pdf which you can print off.

I made a cute sign with mine by spray painting the back of a private property sign and using Mod Podge to adhere it.  I also found a cute witch’s broom at JoAnn’s for $4 to go with it.



Sunday, October 2, 2011

Pumpkin time

It’s finally October so I decided to take Jake to a pumpkin patch.  Mom, Sara and Julia came too!  We went to Ebert’s Greenhouse in Ixonia.  We all arrived right at 10am when they open. 

Our first stop was the hayride!


The hayride took us to a corn maze which was long enough to be interesting and easy enough that you won’t really get lost which is good for the kids.


And at the end of the maze was the pumpkin patch!


Then back on the hayride where Jake kept an eye on the tractor.


After the pumpkins were weighed and paid for we headed to get the kid’s faces painted.  Julia got a really pretty butterfly which I forgot to get a picture of and Jake got a football, which you can maybe make out.


We took a pit stop for popcorn, caramel apples, cookies and apples.  Then we headed to story time.  The story was The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler which is a story about a mouse’s walk in the woods.  The story was cute and after they took a walk through the “woods” behind the set.  It was really neat and I’m kicking myself for not taking pictures, but it was worth going to.

Shortly after story time we headed home.  There was a lot more to do at Ebert’s but with little ones it can be overwhelming.  As a treat I rented the movie The Gruffalo from Redbox and we watched it tonight.  Jake really liked it and it was only a 30 minute movie. 

Ebert’s has their festivities all month and it is worth the drive and time to go and check it out.  My only advice to to get their early since by 11am the place was packed!