Friday, April 27, 2012

Little Mister Four

Introducing Little Mr. 4.

He arrived on April 2nd, weighing 8 lbs. 14 oz.  I think that a large portion of that weight was in those chubby cheeks.

We love his plump little face, long legs and that heavenly baby smell.  He is sweet and we love having him here in our home.

He is keeping us really busy.  Too busy to blog.

I will try and update more often, but if you're wondering what we are up to at our house, here's a little peek.

Mr. One is usually face-first in a book these days, loving the Magic Treehouse chapter books and anything to do with Legos.  He's getting ready for his piano recital and will speed-play his song every day.

Mr. Two is busy building, drawing and playing.  He is enjoying preschool and making friends.  Both he and Mr. One love holding Mr. Four and are generally helpful.

Mr. Three is asserting himself as an independent, curious two year old.  He started this by launching himself out of the crib one day after Mr. Four and I came home from the hospital.  That meant a toddler bed for him pronto.  He loves to take advantage of baby feeding time.  If Mom is feeding the baby, then he knows he has opportunity to get into things he knows he shouldn't (the sink, his brothers' toy bins, the garbage, scissors, pens, etc.).  He also has decided that he doesn't want to sleep any more.  Not cool, but we're handling it.  It's a good thing he's so adorable.

Mike has been extremely helpful and jumps in to do what he can to keep our home in one piece and give attention to whoever needs it the most when he is home.  I don't know what I'd do without him! 

I have lots of help from family, especially my mom.  I am so spoiled with all she does to help during the day, like watching Mr. Three so I can take a nap when Mr. Four is slumbering.  It means so much just to have someone to talk to during the day as well!

Even with help, I've been really overwhelmed and tired.  Our together time at home consists of movies, playing Wii games, lots of story books and independent play.  Not a lot of structured activities.  Let's face it, I'm in survival mode right now, and that's just fine with me. I hope to plan out some fun activities for the summer to keep my kids busy and happy.  But that can wait for another day...

Excuse me now, while I pick up my hungry little baby and take the dental floss away from Mr. Three, oh, and I think we all need a nap!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Church Cleaning, Doughnuts and Puffins

We have started a little tradition in our home that my children hold dear:  After we help clean the church building as a family (we sign up to help every three months), we head to our nearby Safeway and get doughnuts.  Then, to ease my conscience from this sugar-and-fat-laden breakfast, we make "Jamba Juice" to go with them.  This means I dump whatever fruit I have on hand, juice and a carton of yogurt into the blender with ice and call it a Jamba Juice.  My kids love it.

Mr. Two was at Safeway a few weeks ago and commented, "Mom, I really want to go and clean the church.  When do we get to go clean?"  I told him we'd have a turn in April and asked him why he was so eager to clean.  He replied, "I want to get doughnuts for breakfast."

I figure if my kids are excited about doing work and service, even if it's for the doughnuts, it's a good start.  Hopefully, we are instilling good work habits and a love for our church as well.  They really are pretty good little cleaners.

Now for the problem:  One of Mike's responsibilities with his church calling is to oversee the building cleaning.  Consequently, we clean the building more often.  While we are happy to help, all of those doughnut runs add up.  Luckily, I have another sweet breakfast treat that my family loves that I can cook up on those extra cleaning days.  They're called puffins and they are like a sugary doughnut muffin.  Light and buttery, with no frying involved.  The recipe came from a church cookbook, given to me several years ago from a friend.


4 Tablespoons AND 2 teaspoons shortening
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup milk

Mix shortening, sugar,egg, salt, and nutmeg.  Sift together flour and baking powder.  Add dry ingredients alternately with 1 cup of milk.  Bake in muffin pan at 350 degrees for 16 to 18 minutes, until done in center and lightly browning on edges.  When baked, first roll in melted butter and then cinnamon/sugar mixture.  Serve warm.  Best when eaten the first day.  Makes 12 puffins.

You really have to eat these soon after making them, they just don't keep well.  Luckily, they're so good, you probably won't have any left over anyways!