Friday, October 24, 2014

MOVIES I'VE WATCHED: 8/5/14 - 10/23/14


Library. John Grisham, Harry Connick Jr., and baseball is a combination that our whole family enjoyed. This movie is about a widower and his son who change their identities and relocate to avoid getting in trouble with the IRS. I really liked that the movie showed how doing the wrong thing for the right reasons doesn't make one free of the consequences of their choices, that the truth always comes out, and that a loving family does not equal a perfect family.


Gimme Shelter
Redbox freebie. The true story of a pregnant runaway, this movie is all about overcoming obstacles, people trying to right the wrongs of their past, giving compassionate and practical help to those who are struggling, the ripple effects of our decisions on other people. I don't think it was particularly amazing from an acting standpoint, but I love true stories and this one strikes a realistic balance between "doomed for life" and "happily ever after". Bonus points for the fact that it has James Earl Jones (I like his voice) and footage of the people the movie is based on in the credits (love that).


The Reading Room
Library. Another movie with James Earl Jones, though I didn't realize we'd watched two of his movies back to back until this moment. This movie is the fictional story of a wealthy businessman who fulfills a wish that his wife made on her deathbed by turning a building they own into a place where kids can come to read, study, or just hang out. It's a place where the underdogs of a rough neighborhood are given a chance to succeed. Predictable, but good.


Mom's Night Out
Redbox freebie. I'd heard nothing but great things about this movie, but I had a mixed reaction to it. I definitely laughed at some parts, as I can relate to days where the nitty gritty of parenting and/or having littles in the house feels overwhelming, I like reminders to keep life in perspective, and the fact that the character who'd be stereotyped as the least responsible, caring, or insightful was a nice guy made me happy. However, I get so annoyed by movies (or anything else) that portray men as incompetent idiots who can't manage a home or care for the basic needs of their own children, which this movie does.


God's Not Dead
Library. A Christian philosophy student defends his beliefs in a class taught by a professor who's an outspoken atheist. It was good, but, like Mom's Night Out, I didn't think it lived up to all the hype. Maybe I'm just anti-hype.


The Glenn Miller Story
Borrowed. I've seen this several times in the past, as I love Glen Miller's music, but Silas' piano teacher suggested he watch it as he learns some jazz tunes. James Stewart plays Glenn Miller, a movie about a man who was very popular in the big band era. I really like this movie.


Night Crossing
Library. My dad recommended this movie last weekend. It's the true story of two families who escaped East Germany in 1979. An old movie that's not the best quality filming/sound, but it's a really neat story and worth watching.


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Thursday, October 23, 2014

MENU: 10/23/14 - 10/29/14

Nothing new to share this week, but here's what's on tap.

ADVANCED COOKING (These aren't always planned, so they'll often be things I did the previous week.)
* We sauced and froze two boxes of apples over the weekend.
* I'm going to cook a turkey, make broth, then freeze a bunch of the meat for later.

BREAKFASTS
blueberry oat muffins (I'm going to try them with regular, not quick, oats and skip the topping.)
* doughnuts at church
* oatmeal with brown sugar, cinnamon, milk, peanut butter, maple almond butter, raisins, dried cranberries, fresh or frozen fruit, huh-koe-pee milk, and/or energy mix as optional toppings x5

DINNERS
crockpot beans (from the freezer) & rice
* turkey soup
* angel hair with kale, olives, marinated artichoke hearts, and parmesan
* tacos - seasoned meat, crockpot beans from the freezer, and some other toppings served in a tortilla, bowl, as a salad over a pile of greens, or with mound of rice
* leftovers

SNACKS & DESSERTS
* pumpkin chocolate chip cookies (for a fall festival we're attending)
* pumpkin muffins (post-Bible study snack)
* produce 
* popcorn (kernels from the Winco bulk department that get popped in my Lodge Dutch oven)



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10/23/14 - THANKFUL THURSDAY

I'm thankful that our yard allows us to give fresh bouquets to people for much of the year.

What's one thing that you're thankful for?

Saturday, October 18, 2014

PUMPKIN FEST - 2014

My dad arrived yesterday for our annual pumpkin patch trip and this morning the kids chose to head over to Wooden Shoe again. As usual, everyone had a great time. Corn maze, hay bales to jump and climb, slides, paintball guns, Mt. Angel sausages, water pumps with rubber ducks, wheat to grind, scavenger hunts, and more. Here's a little glimpse of our time there.

The forecast was a high of 72, but it started drizzling as soon as we arrived. We decided to take a family picture right away in case we got drenched, but the rain let up a few minutes later and it was 72 by the time we left. It's better to err on the side of caution with important things like family pictures, though ... even if one of our family members, who will remain nameless, has a hard time taking pictures seriously.


Naomi always loves this rope and netting spider web.


Teebs had fun on the animal/tire swings.


Tim and I snapped a selfie while the kids played.


At one point my dad noticed that the cows on the cow train all had names on them and that one was made for Tim.


Then we saw one for me. Ha!


We eventually made it out to the corn maze, but this year the big boys took off on their own and we met them back at the main area later on. The three adults and two youngest Ws tackled the maze together. Naomi and Papa were the navigators for much of the time.


We heard Silas and Devon at one point and I zoomed in through the stalks to prove that we saw them.


Devon loves grinding the wheat and spends a huge chunk of time doing it each year.


Silas hung out at the bean bag toss for quite a while.


My dad is working on a blog post with his own pictures right now, so I'll come back and link it up when he's done.

Friday, October 17, 2014

CIGARETTE CRAVING

A few weeks ago we all walked down to a free museum down the road that we'd recently discovered, meandered over to the plaza for a picnic lunch, then strolled over to the library for a bit before walking home. It was a mellow, fun morning as a family.

There was, however, one rough patch. It involved tears. Lots of tears. And some displeasure toward the authority figures in one person's life. Check it out for yourself.


That's Teebs bemoaning the fact that we refused to allow him to keep the cigarette butt he found on the ground in the middle of the plaza. Prior to this incident he'd never heard the word "cigarette" or seen one, which made the hysterical sobbing he initially burst into pretty amusing. Of course, he denied the fact that he'd been crying at all .. but whatever.  Silly boy.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

MENU: 10/16/14 - 10/22/14

I had a major recipe flop last week. My goal was something like shortcake - lemon-thyme biscuits topped with heated, crushed raspberries (like a sauce). The biscuits weren't that great, plus I forgot to sweeten the raspberries and they were bitter. Bummer. In other news, I tried two new recipes that turned out well.

* whole wheat apple pancakes - Tiffany linked this old recipe in a recent post and we had a little applesauce to use up, so I spontaneously busted out a double batch for breakfast yesterday.

* beef stew - This was the first stew I'd ever made and it turned out great!

ADVANCED COOKING (These aren't always planned, so they'll often be things I did the previous week.)
* I processed and froze 10 lb. of kale last Friday.

BREAKFASTS
* doughnuts at church
* oatmeal with brown sugar, cinnamon, milk, peanut butter, maple almond butter, raisins, dried cranberries, fresh or frozen fruit, huh-koe-pee milk, and/or energy mix as optional toppings x5
DINNERS
* leftovers
* tacos - seasoned meat, crockpot beans from the freezer, and some other toppings served in a tortilla, bowl, as a salad over a pile of greens, or with mound of rice
lentils & rice
* pizza (Dad's treat)
* sesame honey chicken (crockpot)/rice/frozen green beans
* Lebanese red lentil soup/toast
* egg & potato scramble (we ended up having leftovers twice last week, once because I was processing kale, so this got bumped)


SNACKS & DESSERTS
* produce, including some lemon garlic cukes
* popcorn (kernels from the Winco bulk department that get popped in my Lodge Dutch oven)
* banana spice cookies (part for us, part for a ladies' cookie potluck I'm hosting)


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10/16/14 - THANKFUL THURSDAY

I'm thankful that my dad will be here tomorrow.

What's something that you're thankful for?