October 24, 2014

Finding Calm After School

 For two school years and two months of of school, every day between 3:30 and 5 o'clock (dinner time) has been stressful and tiring.

I need to spend those ninety minutes between the bus stop and the table preparing the meal AND with my children.

But yesterday I had it right. It was a first.

October 22, 2014

Yoda Ears Headband Craft and Tutorial

My husband happily introduced our children to Star Wars. I've encouraged the family passion a bit by creating Star Wars dolls for the children. My children are enjoying

My sister recently offered some Star Wars costumes for our children to borrow. They're quite awesome. However, our three year old (yes!) does not prefer to wear the Yoda mask.  So...I made a simple Yoda ears "costume" from paper.

October 20, 2014

Sweet Potato Salad Recipe

I've heard about the health benefits of sweet potatoes for several years, however, until now, the only recipe I ever made was sweet potato fries. I was looking for recipes on Pinterest and found this.   It seemed to be an interesting sweet potato salad recipe so I tried it right away.

I adapted it, a bit, for some friends and I who were getting together one morning. A few days later, I made it again and ate it for lunch over the next several days. (My husband doesn't prefer sweet potatoes.)

October 16, 2014

5 Favorite Apple Recipes

Apples are a favorite fruit in our home. When they are in season, a trip to the local apple orchard provides us a half-bushel of apples for the family to snack upon and bake with for a couple weeks. I thought I'd remind you of our family-favorite apple recipes and a couple of bonus apple uses, too.

Though I've never posted the recipe, my all-time favorite (despite the work) is apple pie. My pies are not pretty...but maybe this fall I will manage a picture and share Grandma's recipe with you.

October 15, 2014

Good Books, Good Friends

There was a period not too long ago when I did not have strong friendships in my life, though I desired them. 
We had just moved a into over the border into Pennsylvania from Maryland. We were forty minutes from our church and a bit further from my husband's work. My former co-workers were no longer near us. It was a lonely time.

October 14, 2014

Semi-Homemade Spice Cake

I'm a little fuzzy about who introduced me to spice cake. It was either my mother-in-law or my sister-in-law. One great thing about my husband's family is we all share our recipes with one another.  Spice cake is delicious...even if a recipe is not required.

Last week I bought apple cider at the local apple orchard. I immediately was considering what would compliment the cider for a tasty treat. The previous week I had made Laura Ingalls Wilder's gingerbread recipe. I decided on spice cake and contacted my husband's mom to ask how she makes it. She makes wedding and birthday cakes (including ours) on the side, so she is my go-to for all things cake related.
Semi-Homemade Frosted Spice Cake Recipe

October 8, 2014

How to Gain Quiet with Children

Some days are anything but quiet with three children. When the children get riled up, I typically just send them outside. Usually this is effective, but sometimes they need to wind down without going wild.