Tag Archives: Family

{Wordless Wednesday} Harry Potter Exhibit In NYC








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Pancakes! Pancakes! Pancakes!

Today is National Pancake Day!

Normally I would love to toss the kiddies into my truck and head over to iHop for some pancake delishiousness, but that’s just not happening. Instead, we have decided to make some for dinner tonight, right here in the comfort of our home.

The boy has requested traditional pancakes, the girl will most likely want chocolate chip and I’m going to have a banana protein version.

Of course I had to hop on Pinterest to see what they had for inspiration and as usual, they didn’t let me down. I found a paleo version of the pancakes while just browsing thru what the people I follow pinned. (Thanks Jackie!)

So here is the I found and what I’ll be using in the kitchen tonight:

choc chip pan

This stack of fluffy goodness is made from 4 simple ingredients that you probably already have on hand!
Photo and recipe from RecipeBoy.com – Click on the photo to view both!

I’ll be using this recipe to create all three variations I mentioned above (unless the picky boy sees me, then he’ll be having Bisquick pancakes….don’t judge!) I think I’ll add some cinnamon and a scoop of vanilla protein powder to my banana pancakes….think a healthy version of banana bread!

Do you have a healthier version of pancakes that you love? Care to share your recipe? (wink wink)

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Filed under Family Fun, Health & Fitness, Recipes, Snacks & Treats

{Wordless Wednesday} Holiday Edition

75th Birthday Lunch with Family

Cookies for Santa



Christmas Morning

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Getting Crafty For The Holidays

As you all know, I’ve spent a lot of time on Pinterest this year, so  it is no wonder I decided to look for inspiration for teacher gifts on there.

I normally do some kind of gift card for them as well as the bus drivers and religious instruction teachers. It tends to add up quickly and after the expenses that Super Storm Sandy brought with her, my budget was kinda small (not that it’s ever overflowing to begin with).

Thankfully I found these cute ideas to dress up holiday gift cards, as well as inexpensive printable gifts:

Dress up a coffee house gift card with this cute printable! All you need is a printer, a coffee cup sleeve and a glue stick! Ribbon makes a nice touch too!

Dress up a coffee house gift card with this cute printable! All you need is a printer, a coffee cup sleeve and a glue stick! Ribbon makes a nice touch too!

Classroom art printable in a cute frame I found at the dollar store. Gift bag tags I made to dress up simple candles in votive holders. (I'm all for the cheesy sayings this year)

Classroom art printable in a cute frame I found at the dollar store. Gift bag tags I made to dress up simple candles in votive holders. (I’m all for the cheesy sayings this year)

Make sure you stop by Eighteen 25, it’s where I found the coffee gift card holder and the classroom printable. I plan on using the bookstore and iTunes printable as well!

Merry gifting and sorry this post came so late, it’s still a handy little “last minute” gift idea!

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Family Movie Night….Holiday Time!

Grinch QuoteThanksgiving is always the official holiday kick-off here. As I shared before, it’s when we put up our tree and start decorating the house. It is also when we all start wanting to watch holiday movies.

The first holiday movie we watch every year, is The Nightmare Before Christmas. This is my all time favorite, so I love that we can start watching it before Halloween arrives!

This year, my daughter requested a family movie night. She thought it would be fun if every night, until Christmas, we all sat together and watched a holiday favorite. I really liked this idea, especially because people are usually so busy and hectic during the weeks leading up to Christmas and New Year.

So…..Family Movie Time was born! We don’t watch a full length movie every night, but rather a Christmas special. We have tons of them on DVD and this time of year, they are always on TV which makes it easy.

We started off with our favorites, like A Charlie Brown Christmas, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty and one of my favorites, How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the original Grinch, not the abomination with Jim Carrey….shudder).

Last night, ABC Family kicked off their holiday movie countdown with another favorite of mine…. ELF! If you have never seen it, please stop depriving yourself of humor and laughter….go watch it now! No really…go, this blog will still be here when you’re done.


Another family favorite of ours is the Polar Express. While I sometimes find the computer animation of the characters a little creepy, I love the story and the soundtrack of this movie. I think it covers a great topic, especially for the age of my children. Do you believe or are you a doubter? Hot chocolate is must have while watching this holiday favorite.

As the holiday quickly creeps up on our family, I look forward to a little unplugged time with the kids and Christmas classics like, Miracle on 34th Street, A Christmas Story, Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Muppets Christmas Carol, Mickey’s Christmas Carol and many, many more.

Next up on our traditions list? Holiday baking!

Do you have a favorite holiday movie or family tradition?

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New Additions and Holiday Traditions

Hello everyone!

Sorry I’ve been MIA lately, but things always tend to get hectic around this time of year. Being as I am a cake decorator and the hubs is a letter carrier, the holidays spark an increase in hours for both of us. It also seems that we have both been doing some hardcore drugs, cause we decided our family needed a new puppy. Yes, you read that correctly, a new puppy. I blame the show “Too Cute” which airs on Animal Planet. I also blame the convenient timing of the pet adoption at Petsmart, which just happened to be going on the day after I watched a “Too Cute” marathon AND the fact that I happened to have my son out running errands with us. You see, a puppy is something he has been begging us for. Without further delay, I introduce you to our little bundle of fur, cuteness and pointy little fangs…

Meet Jax. He’s a Catahoula/Beagle mix who is currently trying to sit on my lap along with my laptop…sigh…

Now that you have been mesmerized by his cuteness, let me tell you that puppies are like newborns! I forgot what having a newborn was like since our youngest is 8 years old now and it’s been 13 years since we’ve trained a puppy. Jax has been with us for almost 2 weeks now and I think we are all starting to settle in, get into a routine and hopefully we will be sleeping through the night soon.

My other issue is that while he is like a newborn at night, he is like a toddler during the day. He is super curious and has to check out everything.

This weekend, like every year since I was little, we put up the Christmas tree. Poor Thanksgiving tends to be nothing more than a day that people eat too much and finally don’t feel like freaks for wanting to listen to holiday music, shop for presents and break out the holiday decor.

With a new puppy in the house, I had to approach the tree a little differently. I made sure I secured it to the wall, so when I have to army crawl under it to retrieve his tiny butt, I don’t knock it over. We also didn’t put any breakable ornaments on the bottom a) so he doesn’t knock them off, break it and then eat something that could hurt him. b) so we don’t kill him for breaking our memories.

Our tree with three of my favorite ornaments. The stockings sum up how my kids feel about each other, while the cd ornament I made a few years back, capture them at what I think might be their cutest.

Our tree is my favorite part of the holidays. We have an eclectic collection of ornaments that we put on it, ranging from handmade/photo ones that the kids have made over the years at school, to figurines from the mobile that hung above my crib when I was an infant. Our tree is full of memories and I love unwrapping each ornament and remembering a moment from my past. It warms my heart and also makes me sad at times, because there are loved ones who are no longer with us, but special ornaments that represent memories with them.

The kids love putting the tree up…ok…they love hounding me to put the tree up, come in, select their favorite ornaments, put them on the tree in the worst spots ever and then leave me to fix things. Yes, I admit, I let the kids put stuff on the tree and then rearrange things to my liking when they disappear to their rooms. Don’t act like you don’t do the same…pfft!

I know this post is a little all over the place, but so is my life. I have however been very consistent with my Couch to 5K! This past week I had to shift my run days around due to my work schedule, but it worked out well because I got to go out and do my own personal Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving day. Tomorrow starts week 4, which means I am at the halfway point. I look forward to seeing what the next few weeks bring, since I have steadily improving. Yesterday I beat all of the my previous pace/time/distant stats, which made me really happy.

I hope everyone is ready to have a happy and healthy holiday season. Hopefully I will be a little better about finding time to post here, too.

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Semi Wordless Wednesday {Our Experience With Hurricane Sandy}

As Sandy approached we waited on long lines for generators and prayed for the best.

When the power went out, we all shared a room and passed time making shadow puppets on the ceiling and using portable electronics. (Thank goodness for those!)

The days after the storm were filled with some chaos, downed trees and lines, long gas lines and a scramble to find more firewood since it was our only source of heat.

As stories of damage emerged via Twitter and Facebook, you became grateful that the least of your problems was no power and heat. Having a generator/fireplace, roof over your head and your family safe and sound was all you needed. It truly humbled you.

Halloween was pushed back to November 5th here in NJ. We had power back at this point (I know many still do not).

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Sunday Funday

Normally in this house, Sundays are as lazy as it gets. There is usually a late start to us getting out of bed, breakfast, looking through the Sunday paper and then we watch the NFL RedZone channel all day while yelling at the TV and checking our Fantasy Football scores. Yesterday, however, I didn’t feel like sitting home. I don’t know if it is because the Broncos had a bye week or if it was just the nice weather calling to me, but I wanted to be outside.

To start the day off, the hubs and I got dressed and headed over to the Englishtown Auction. At first I was thinking we should go for a run, but I’m happy we decided to just walk around there. We were able to have some alone time, talk and just enjoy being together. Neither of us had been there in quite some time so we just walked, soaked up some sunshine  and checked out what the vendors were offering.  I always forget that they have great local farm stands there. They are not organically grown, but sometimes my budget doesn’t allow me to stick with all organic stuff, and to be quite honest, I’m okay with that these days. I scored some beautiful strawberries and amazingly large sweet potatoes while there. I really should have picked up some more stuff, like eggplant, peppers and cauliflower but to be honest, I didn’t feel like carrying them around with me and the sweet potatoes were heavy enough to be considered a workout.

A sample of the farm stands at the flea market. Most items were between $1 – $3 per basket. You can’t beat those prices!

After walking around the market, we headed home, and my son decided it would be fun to go bowling. It was nice to go out as a family, especially since my daughter has reached that age were she is too cool to hang with us and is usually running around with her friends instead. It was also nice to get my son away from the video games and have both kids being active without the aid of an electronic device.  I’m not going to say this excursion was all laughs and giggles, but it was nice to be out as a family and enjoy some time together.

Our afternoon of bowling. Top left: Matt who was happy he got to choose want we did today. Top Right: Maddie bowling, Bottom Left: Me hoping for a strike, Bottom Right: Maddie & Mike Instagraming or checking FB. lol.

These days, we all tend to be so busy. Between work, workouts, school and chores, there just never seems to be enough time for everything. Yesterday I realized that there are certain things you just HAVE to make time for and family time is one of them.

What kind of activities do you like to do as a family?

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