Friday, August 29, 2008

Friday Night Pizza!

We love to make our own pizza. Toss the dough in the bread machine, get a can of pizza sauce, some cheese, pepperoni and olives and the kids are in heaven. I always get them to add something like a pepper or mushroom to make sure we have some veggies in there. Today I made myself an eggplant tomato pizza as well.

This recipe will make 4 decent sized pizzas. My three kids and I can eat 2 of the pizzas with 2 left over for lunch or maybe we will save some for my husband when he gets home. OH and I may save him a beer too!

Here is the recipe I use for the crust, it is actually a focaccia bread recipe but works so well for pizza.

Bread Machine pizza crust or Focaccia bread recipe:

  • 1 1/2 cups water

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten (optional)

  • 4 cups whilte flour (I use 3 cups unbleached and 1 cup whole wheat)

  • 3 Tablespoons sugar

  • 2 Tablespoons instant skim milk powder

  • 2 teaspoons yeast

Put ingredients in machine in order above. Set to "dough" setting.

For Pizza:
cut into 4 pieces. This will roll out to about a 12" diameter thin crust. Put this on either a pizza stone or pan with some cooking spray or corn meal. Bake at 450 F for 3 minutes. Take out of oven and put your pizza toppings on it (light sauce, at least 1 cup of cheese, your other toppings and then light cheese) then bake for 6-7 more minutes. You can put fresh basil on top for a lovely flavor.

For the Focaccia Bread:
cut the dough in half, spread into squares on baking sheets or pizza pans. Brush lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle on: garlic powder, onion powder, parsley flakes, basil, rosemary, feta or Parmesan cheese (or both!) and a little coarse salt. Bake in an oven preheated to 450 F for 10 - 12 minutes. Enjoy with soup, cheese or a really good olive oil with salt and pepper. This is also fabulous with home made hummus.

New Art!

Chloe brought this masterpiece home yesterday. She is becoming quite the little artist. The BFF heart with arrow coming from the blue bird is adorable! Seriously seven year old girls come up with the cutest things.

Yesterday we hung out with Eli. Freya and Eli are two little peas in a pod. They are so freakin' sweet together but have this love/hate relationship. One moment they are hugging like mad and the next moment there is sand flying in faces, spitting and the occasional poke. But when we part, they usually have made up and are BFF again!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Yesterday we met with some friends, Geni and Natalie. Now that school has started, I can get back into my weekly running/bike riding regime. We usually meet at a trail that has a playground attached and run for 3 miles or so then let the girls play.

Yesterday after watching me struggle with Suki and the jog stroller, Geni offered to put Freya in her 2 seater and push both girls together. I only had to deal with Suki after that.

Let me just say that Geni is freakishly strong. I am not able to push that thing with 2 girls in there, let alone run while pushing it. Well, maybe if Godzilla were chasing me then I could muster the strength it takes to push 70 pounds of kid meat while running for my life. I offered to push it and bailed about 20 seconds into my turn. I was only able to help on the down hill sections. God I suck.

Here are the girls posing.

Thanks for the comments, I am so glad I have readers!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Perfect Play Dough

Perfect Play Dough Recipe

This is the recipe from my children's preschool. It is awesome and I have never had a problem making it. The dough is super soft and lasts a very long time if you keep it in an airtight container.

1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup salt
2 TBL cream of tartar (to keep fresh)
1 cup water
2 TBL oil
food coloring
kool-aid packet (optional for scent, be mindful of the color of the kool-aid, it will change the color of your play dough)

Combine flour, salt and cream of tartar in a pan. Add water, food coloring and oil and stir. Add Kool-aid and stir. Once mixed together, put pan over low heat and stir until a ball forms in the middle (the mixture will be sticky). This usually takes 3-4 minutes. Make sure you scrape the sides down and get in the corners when stirring so you don't end up with burnt dough.

Dump out on a counter and kneed until it has cooled down a bit.

At this point you can either add glitter and/or essential oils for added effect.
The kool-aid is not a necessity but it does make the dough smell really good. It also will effect the color of the dough so make sure you choose the appropriate color of kool-aid for the color of dough you will be making.

You can keep it in a zip-loc bag or container for many moments of enjoyment. This makes a great gift! Tie a bow around your container and gift it to playmates and mothers of new babies with toddlers. I also always made a large batch to give to the kinder-teacher on the first day of school!

Leave a comment, I wonder if people read my blogs.....

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

First day of School! Here's Chloe at her desk.

Yep, I dropped the big kids off at school this morning at 7:30 sharp. I am sure they were thinking, "don't let the door hit you in the ass." Freya and I have had a fun relaxing day. First we went to the store to pick up a few needed items. So nice to shop with ONE child. We came home after the shopping trip and made some cookies, hung some clothes to dry and then went for a dip in the pool. Freya is reveling in her alone time with mama. She has unexpectedly gone off and played by herself through out the day.

Here is the lunch I made today. I have been wanting to do these hot dog octopuses for ever. I finally got around to it and decided to make Muffin Tin Monday's lunch with a sea theme. Muffin Tin Mondays

From left to right: veggie stick trees, hummus beach, goldfish (couldn't pass up), hot dog octopuses with olive eyes, olive life preservers and finally a raft cut from a hot dog bun with pretzel stick oars. Had I planned for this I would have made some blueberry juice knox blox as water.

I put the same things in the big kid's lunches as well. Once the other 4th grade boys see my son's hot dog octopuses, it pretty much guarantees he will get his ass kicked on the first day of school.

Look, no kicked ass. He's the one with the grumpy face and red folder:

Monday, August 25, 2008

Freya is a fish. A slippery naked fish.

She can swim very well, and I am talking freestyle, no doggy paddling in our pool. Now she has taught herself to dive to the bottom of the pool to retrieve objects. I am pretty shocked that she is capable of doing this since her siblings didn't even want to get their faces wet until maybe age 5. Oh and to the comment, yes, she is the youngest. Freya turned 3 June 16th!

Today is the last day of summer vacation. I am ecstatic. Why our school district decided to start school on a Tuesday is beyond me. There must be some higher power watching us Round Rockers trying to hold it together for one more day. And all the Austin Mamas who are all ready in first-day-of-school bliss, you can go suck it.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Hair.

My wonderful husband seems to think he can pull this look off. Granted many people give him compliments and honestly, I like the look. However, imagine yourself on the bottom... This thing is all in your face suffocating you, making you inhale stray wisps of hair. And the pieces of this hairy mass that are not in your mouth or up your nose are ever so slightly brushing your face and tickling. It's enough to ruin what few intimate moments parents of 3 children may have.

To make matters worse I find his long dead hair in obvious and random places. They turn up in the shower drain, the floor when sweeping and tightly wound around the roll of the vacuum. There are usually long pieces floating in the pool, I find them in the yard when pulling weeds and every where in between. Some days the lint trap of the dryer is coated in a black hairy wad of nastiness. The worst place to find a long strand of hair is in that stir fry that tasted so good until you slowly pull a thick black piece from your mouth.

I finally drug him in yesterday. He put up a good fight, I actually had to drive him in because there is no way he would have done it on his own.

The hair was donated to locks of love and even his penny-pinching self can't complain because Great Clips gives you the cut for free if you donate your hair.

Don't be sad to see it go as the thing will be back atop Raita's head in 1-2 years.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

So, I am making this for my step aunt? I am so not happy with the panda. I still have to finish the bamboo but even when I get done with that, the panda just sucks. My 7 year old told me it looks like a cartoon and would be good in a kids room. She may be right but that isn't the look I was going for. After looking at some more pictures of pandas, their fur seems to be almost yellow. Maybe that will help, I don't know. I hope I can pull it together and make it look good.

On the bottom of the painting I wrote "Bear Cat" in Chinese. I guess that in China this is how they refer to a panda. They do kinda look like cat bears.

You can sponsor a panda here.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Suki is our puppy but she's getting so big. Jonah just taught her how to play dead. We point our finger at her and yell "bang!" She reluctantly lays down on her side and stays very still.

Here she is as a super cute puppy.

It's kind of hard to tell from the picture but she was bit by something a couple of weeks ago. The first picture was taken the day before, the second picture is the following day. You can tell that her nose if swollen as well as her jowls and it even spread up to her eyes and ears. We took her into the vet because it just kept getting worse. They gave her a cortisone shot and it went down right away.
No one knew what had bit her. We had many suggestions that it could have been a wasp, fire ant or a scorpion. I wasn't sure any of those things could have done it because her face was so huge. Well, the following week, I went to go outside and found a baby rattle snake at my back door. I am pretty sure this is what bit Suki.
She is fine now and hopefully she has learned a lesson from it all!

Freya and I attend many play dates. We usually have a craft of some sort to do. Here we are painting an egg crate and transforming it into a caterpillar.

We spent the play date reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar

while eating many of the items the caterpillar ate!

To make an eggshell caterpillar:

Cut off the top of the egg crate. You can use this for your paint pallet. Then cut the egg crate into half lengthwise.

Have your child paint the caterpillar.

Once dry, hot-glue some googely eyes on the front. Then poke two holes in the top of the "head" and put a pipe cleaner onto each hole so each end sicks out of the top. You can then shape the pipe cleaners to make them look like antennae.