gallamore west: September 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Fun on the Farm!

This morning the boys and I, along with my mom, took the boys to Riley's Farm with my moms group. It was so much fun! We enjoyed the most delicious caramel apple ever, learned all about 19th century farm life with stories, games, and songs, went on a tractor-pulled hayride, bought a watermelon fresh from the field for one dollar (Sam ate FOUR pieces for dinner!), and so much more. Click here if you want to plan your own visit to Riley's Farm! We can't wait to go back again soon!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

San Diego Super Chargers!

Ben and I were so, so excited that Jake and Mandy wanted to watch football with us!! Ok, Ben was soooo excited about the football part. I was really excited about the food part. Oh, who am I kidding... I'm a maniac Chargers fan and there's nothing better than watching them stomp all over the dreaded Raiders! Which didn't exactly happen today, but somehow the Chargers pulled out a win. Ben, on the other hand, was completely MIA since the Redskins were beating the Cowboys at the same time. Wahoo!!

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Horray for Party City for having all kinds of Chargers goodies in stock!

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Ben was so excited that my brother's getting into football (finally, he's what, almost 30?!?!) that he bought him a little "bottle bra" as Jake calls it.

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And making sure not to leave out Mandy, I tied a blue ribbon on a yellow squash I grew in the garden and presented her with this "Go Chargers! Squash"

Click here for a few recipes of some treats we enjoyed today. Or click here.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Sweet dreams

I'm sitting here searching for a recipe for frosting and I just heard a noise in the boys' room. I ran in there and Sam wasn't in his bed. Panic! I looked closer, definitely an empty bed. I looked in the bathroom. Not there. I thought maybe after a month of room sharing bliss, he missed his old room and was sleeping on the floor in there. Not there. Ready to really panic, I went back into the boys' room and saw this...

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Sam had climbed in the crib and was fast asleep. Ahhhh... not only do they like sharing a room, now they even like sharing a bed. (And yes, Jake does have A LOT of hair and yes, it is especially crazy in this picture!)

Watching the Debate... three-year old style

Mommy: Who do you want to win Sam, McCain or Obama?

Sam: How about Shamu?

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Seriously at this point, as long as it's not W, I'm good :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The most fun baby shower!!

A few of my favorite things all in one night... a relaxing pedicure at a cute little nail salon open after hours JUST for us... wahoo!!! Desserts galore, a small gathering of fun girls, games, party favors... Sheryl's baby shower was perfect!!
Host unlimited photos at for FREE!Great party planning by Michelle! And Sheryl is so patient and brave for not finding out whether she's about to have a boy or a girl... seriously, I cannot even wait to get my mail out of the box everyday! How in the world people choose not to know the sex of their baby is so wild to me. Tons of respect to her for having so much patience. I, on the other hand, was not blessed with much of that. Click here for the recipe for raspberry swirl cupcakes, my most favorite non-chocolate dessert ever. Look at those little cheesecakes, sitting proudly between all that heavenly chocolate.
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Ever since we left last night I've been trying to think of when, how, why I can go back to that very fun nail salon again... birthday party! book club! playgroup! (whoops, guess we couldn't/wouldn't/shouldn't really leave the kids at home for a playgroup while we're out getting our toes done, huh?!)

LOVE her!!

Here are a few of the gazillion reasons why I love, love, love Michelle.

1. On the first day of Fall (when Ben thought I was crazy for making a "First Day of Fall" gift and wrapping it to give to Michelle) she and I brought the boys to Sea World, in honor of... you guessed it, THE First Day of Fall. When we pulled into the parking lot, we ran up to each other, hugged and giggled "Happy First Day of Fall!!" Yep, that's right, she brought ME a First Day of Fall gift too... a fresh from the oven Apple Spice muffin that was deeelicious!
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2. She takes Sam on the rides for me with Carson when I know they'll make me dizzy... even though it made her dizzy too. And how cute are they with their arms up in the air?! The three of them had the ride all to themselves!
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3. We're twinies!! Not only did we both wear green tops, black capris, and almost the exact same shoes to the most fun ever baby shower last night (that she planned and it was awesome!) we both picked out the same card for the mommy-to-be... out of all those millions of cards to choose from!
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4. She let me join in on her semi-annual garage sale at her house last weekend! ME, a very amateur garage salesgirl. Unlike her and her sisters who were sooooo funny... selling the Christmas gifts that they had given EACH OTHER!! But I did happen to have the most fun item up for sale... OOPS! Almost forgot to empty out an old purse I was selling. I am cracking myself up here... STILL. A whole week later.
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Michelle, you're the best!!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

$25 an ounce please...

I'm not quite sure why in the world I had the urge to do this, but I thought it would be soooo fun to roast our own sunflower seeds, from the sunflowers that Sam and I planted in the backyard.

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It was actually pretty exciting for me show him the "whole picture"... how the seed we planted and watered grew into that mammoth yellow flower that greeted us from our family room windows in the morning, then we cut off the heads, dried them for weeks and weeks, pulled off all the seeds, soaked them in an overnight salt bath, boiled the salt bath off of them, then roasted them for hours and hours in the oven. And it was fun really to again, see the "whole picture"...
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But seriously, whoever is this David guy that sells sunflower seeds in a bag for a buck?! After all that work, I'd charge at least $25 a bag. Ohhh... and then Ben ate one and said that they "would be good without the shell on them." So then Sam and I took the shells off of all eight thousand sunflower seeds... haaaaaaaa!!! If you are really, really bored for weeks at a time, here's a kind of fun little project for you. Sam and I really did have a great time bonding over our seeds. Click here for a recipe for roasting your sunflower seeds... or better yet, just buy them for a buck!

Happy 1st Day of Fall!!

The days are getting shorter, the leaves are starting to change colors, the air is getting crisp... whoever says that we don't experience Fall in Southern California, I beg to differ. I know, I know... it's NOTHING like Virginia in the fall which is truly amazing. But still, after a long, hot summer in So Cal, I'm ready to welcome in a new season! And what better way to welcome in Fall than making a big, warm batch of caramel popcorn? Click here for the recipe... you'll love it!
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The boys and I off to Sea World with our good friends Michelle, Carson, and Parker tomorrow so I packaged up some caramel corn for them to celebrate the start of our favorite season!
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A visit to the Midway

I'm not sure why, as a native 5th generation San Diegan, I've NEVER been on The Midway... seriously, I think that should be a crime, like my good friend Olivia who is from San Diego and has never, not once, been to the Wild Animal Park. What the heck?!

Anywho, Samuel is really into big ships these days so I thought it would be fun to take the boys down to see The Midway, that humongous aircraft carrier next to the cruise terminal in downtown San Diego. I looked it up online and the website said you should wear good walking shoes and plan to spend 3-4 hours onboard. Hmmm, I'm a flip-flops girl myself and Jake is the squirmiest one-year old ever AND have I told you about my irrational fear of my kids falling??? So, needless to say, I STILL haven't actually been on The Midway yet, but we took a fun little walk near it instead :)

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I LOVE this picture because Jake started running towards the water and even though he was still far away from it, Sam was yelling "Don't fall in the water baby!" So he held his brother's hand to protect him... sweet big brother :) Hmmm... I wonder where in the world Sam got a fear of children falling?!

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And this statue... ohhhhh, I LOVE this statue. Such romance, such passion... on the water, in San Diego. LOVE it!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

1st Day of Preschool!!

Sam was so, so excited to start preschool this past Wednesday!! He loves school and loves learning. I pray he stays this way for a long, long time. We are so proud of our sweet Samuel!

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Sam and Miss Melanie- I'm so glad he calls her Miss Melanie, instead of "Jack's Mom." Jack is one of Sam's good friends and he's thrilled that Miss Melanie is one of his teachers, and so am I!!

Here are a few pictures of him on his 1st day of preschool this year and last year. It's amazing how much he's grown up this past year.

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Horray for cousins!!

Our boys have lots of cousins. Lots and lots and lots... but they all live far away. So we were thrilled that my sister Kari, her husband Johann, and their three adorable kids Simeon, Corrine, and Ammon came all the way from Iowa to visit. We had a Yee-Haw Slumber Party to celebrate! We're looking forward to some San Diego fun with them next week too... we can't wait!

Who knew a Book Club could be so much fun?!

This was definitely one of the most fun events ever for me to plan and I'm thrilled that everyone could make it AND it's amazing that we ALL read all four books! Delicious food, good friends, fun conversation... if there was an award for the best Book Club group ever, ours would win hands-down! I have so much fun every time, whether I read the book or not :) So girls, are we going to see the movie on November 21st or what?!?! I'm IN!!


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