Thursday, February 18, 2010

family date

thursday night is typically date night...we rotate with another family and one week they keep our kids, and the next week we keep their trying to make sure we (and our marriage) don't get lost in our 3 kids and crazy life...thursday night is set aside...and sacred.
tonight though, our fellow date night family had to postpone, and so we decided to do a family date instead.

i realize that 90% of the population would be sickened by our choice of restaurants, but andy and i both grew up eating there, and happen to still like it...and thanks to aunt carleigh, we had coupons for free kids meals (score!) off we went to eat dinner at pancho's! the boys love the dessert buffet and sopapillas... hopefully they will continue the pancho's traditions as they get older too...much to the dismay of most of our friends! :):)

you can't tell here, but we are seriously jamming out to the highschool musical 3 soundtrack.

gotta love that smile!

after dinner, we headed over to the mall soft play area for the free fun. the boys always have a great time there....logan is on the brink of being too big ...but he mainly follows tysen around and plays with him, so we're gonna milk it for all its worth!

and then ian wanted to take a picture of us...nice work, E!

I love my family!!

busting out the clippers...

poor tysen...this is the 3rd time i've cut his hair in 3 weeks. i cut it the first time, then thought it would be cute to go a little shorter and spike the i did that...then this week, just decided the sides weren't short enough, so i got the clippers out to buzz the sides...then decided i didn't want to mess with trying to fade into the i buzzed the whole thing. what a trooper! it added some age to his baby face...he's definitely looking like a little boy! (and acting like one too, in case you haven't noticed how his right arm is decorated by a sharpie) ... later, we were looking at old videos with the boys, and there was one of logan when he was about this age with his hair buzzed, and logan said, "o look, are singing"....i laughed and said, "nope, that's you, logan!" ....

o well....

i guess this is what happens when you are a youth pastor...someone thought it would be funny to put a huge snowman in front of our porch...which fell over and made 3 GIANT snowballs...blocking our porch entrance...first time we've used our front door since we moved in a year ago!

Friday, February 12, 2010

bundled up...

all bundled up enjoying the very rare snow! we broke the record in DFW for snowfall in 1 day --12.5 inches!!!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

snow day!

as much trouble as it is to get 3 boys ready for the snow...they sure loved it! tysen was a little unsure, and was the first one ready to go inside...he wanted to go watch 'frosty the snowman'...but the older boys had a blast!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


well, i've been experimenting with granola recipes....i'm not sure what i was expecting, but my goal was really to have a healthy snack. i actually thought of it when i got a parfait from mc'ds and the granola was really good mixed in, so i wanted to try making it on my own...and just in time to package up for valentine gifts for teachers! so i started looking at several recipes, and just sorta used what i wanted and created my own 3 recipes...

what i realized was that i wasn't a huge fan of what i guess is normal granola? there doesn't seem to be a lot of taste and i was expecting a sweetness (like the granola cereal i've bought before) was good in my berry yogurt this morning, and was super filling, so i liked that aspect. but to just be able to munch on it by itself, i had to have a little sugar in here was the winning recipe for me!! :)

sweeet almond granola:
4 c oats
1 c almonds
7 Tbls brown sugar
2 Tbls cinnamon
1/2 c light pancake syrup
1/2 c apple juice
1 tsp vanilla

mix the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately, then pour the wet on the dry, and mix till its all coated...then put the mixture on a jelly roll pan (sprayed with pam). bake at 250 degrees for one hour...stirring the granola every 15 minutes. when you first take it out of the oven, its not crunchy, but as it cools, it will get its crunch on!! :)

**there are tons of different things you could add to make it your own...i added dates in one of my recipes, and it worked really well (just wasn't sure of the date/cinnamon combo-so i left it out of this one) could add all kinds of nuts or dried fruit. but if you add dried fruit, you add it after its done cooking!

this was a winner! i think this is what i was looking for in the idea of granola for a snack for the boys. i wish i didn't need the sugar to make it tasty...but i figure that it still gets good grains and protein in them....

Monday, February 8, 2010

grateful for HIS faithfulness...

fair warning: this will be a long post...not really written to anyone, but myself. in my printed yearly blog books with all of the fun stories and pictures from year to year, i want to remember how God provided for us ... over and over again.

andy has been in school now for 2 1/2 years...and even before that, God was faithful in preparing us. the smallest details that meant little at the time...looking back at how it was all part of His plan. andy was talking about going to seminary the first year we were married. we waited, and waited because we never had a total peace about it...but when the time was was a very clear decision for us...and though we weren't totally sure how it would all work...we moved forward. i want to note a funny thing...our crazy appearance on the family feud....that was a part of God's plan! it is amazing how EVERYTHING is orchastrated by Him! see, we did auditions in sept. 2006, and they actually called us back and wanted us to come to L.A. with in 2 weeks of our auditions...sadly, we had to turn them down, because joey and kyle had a non-refundable trip planned (with another couple) we hoped and prayed they would call us back. they july of 2007. you might be wondering why this is so perfect. see, we won money on the family feud...and had we gone that first time they called us....we probably would have spent some of it on something fun (because at the time, we had no idea that we would be starting school the next year). but when we went in july, we knew we were moving to denton, and knew that we had some financially straining years ahead, so we put that money away...and can i just tell you, that we have survived off that chunk of savings from the family feud!!!!! we have thus far been able to pay for andy's school without loans, and were able to supplement our finances from those winnings. the timing of everything was amazing.

ok, so we moved to denton, andy started school, and working part time with denton bible's youth. we raised support to supplement andy's part-time work, and were beyond blessed with amazing support that came through. for the first year and a half, the Lord was so gracious in giving us one-time donors along with monthly donors, and we were able to pay for school, rent, bills, etc... we were constantly amazed at others generosity. (and still is so humbling to have others pour into you, and give generously so that we can finish andy's training at school to be in the ministry.) a year ago, we knew that our monthly support checks would be starting to come in about $700, we started praying...and seeing that it was basically our rent money each month...we prayed for a more affordable place to live (as opposed to having to withdraw savings each month to pay for rent). within a month, the Lord literally just handed us the deal at our apartments....we do resident activities each month in exchange for free rent. it was incredible to see Him provide....right when we needed it. not a moment before, not a moment too late....

now, a year later, the Lord has reminded us of who is in control. last week, our apartment manager came to our door at 5pm on Monday....with a fax from a new corporate managing company that was taking over our complex. the fax stated that they were ending our contract, and it was an official 30 day notice to end our services. so...basically, we either needed a new place to live, or we would have to find a way to pay for rent. we sent emails for prayer, and asking for any options anyone might have....on wednesday morning, andy and i went to look at some apartments, trying to see if there were any cheaper places to live. we got back about 11:30, and decided to run over to the office and check into our options maybe downsizing to save money. when we walked in, our manager greeted us, and said, hang on, i think we are ok! the new management company was there, and they had been discussing our contract, and apparently, there were some misunderstandings...and the new company ended up wanting to renew our contract with the same deal. wow. we are once again, overwhelmed at God's blessings.

i had one friend tell me that she had prayed that morning, that the Lord would resolve our housing issue THAT day...and another friend who had specifically prayed for us to be able to stay in those apartments....praying that they would have a change of heart, and allow us to stay. that was not even something i had prayed for! but the Lord heard the prayers, and now God gets the glory. He once again showed how merciful and good He is. He has NEVER let us down...and He provides for us.....exactly when we need it.
God is GOOD!

brotherly love

logan's at school....its rainy and cold...what else is there to do but build a fort with my little brother?

patch work

we get a lot of questions about ian's patch, so i thought i would write about it, and also so we remember! :)
when he initially got glasses in october, he was seeing 80/20 in his left eye, and 40/20 in his right eye. after a few months of wearing his glasses, his right eye was corrected, and he now sees 20/20 in the right eye (with the use of his glasses). his left eye had improved to seeing 40/20, but was still weaker than the left eye, so we are doing 'patch work' to strengthen that left eye. he wears the patch a couple hours a day until march at his next checkup. and hopefully, that will correct the vision, and he'll be able to quit at that time (the patch not the glasses).
ian's been doing great! he's such a trooper, and doesn't complain about it....lots of people ask him 'what happened to your eye?' and he'll start explaining that the patch helps that eye get stronger...
he has done an amazing job transitioning to his glasses! he loves wearing them (i'm sure partially because of the improved vision!)....i have never had to fight him to wear them. when we bought our 3rd pair (in 3 months) of the plastic ones, we decided they just weren't durable enough for a 4 yr old with 2 brothers, so we invested in some that are supposed to be indestructable.
here's my handsome stud...:)

Saturday, February 6, 2010

hulk smoothies

i'm pretty excited about this new way to make smoothies....our friend tracy shared the recipe, and our friend heather gave us the creative name...and here we are with "hulk smoothies".
bear with me, as the thought of drinking anything green makes me gag, but these really do just taste like a banana smoothie!!

i don't really measure anything...but i used apple juice, a banana, a couple of frozen strawberries and pineapple....that's all normal, right?
here's your key ingredient: a huge handful of baby spinach.
that's right....spinach.

could you taste the spinach? no. but it did make it green....
hence giving it the fond name of a 'hulk smoothie'...

i know some people are blessed with wonderful eaters, and have a 2 year old that will eat a salad...but i was not blessed with this is HUGE for me!! my boys won't touch anything with even a shred of lettuce...but here, they drank an entire cup!!!!! i'm so excited!

TIPS: i did NOT make this in front of the boys...
and i did NOT tell them there was spinach in it.
i DID tell them that it tasted like a banana smoothie...
but i made it green cuz i'm a super cool mom, and i know they love the incredible hulk.
i did have to make them try it...but after one sip...they were sold.
and here's the result!!

i know, i know...that looks awful...but i'm showing you this so you know that my picky picky PICKY boys all drank a full cup....and loved it.

i will say, that i would have added a little more juice to make it was kinda thick, and that made it harder for me to drink (knowing what was in it)....but this is just too creative to not share with others!! a great healthy snack!


last weekend we took a trip to houston. my grandfather and aunt live there, and my dad flew in to meet up with us. we are trying to make a trip each year, and its fun to go all together, so its sorta becoming our 'kazee' vacation....
we are just starting out and everyone is excited to go to houston! the boys did ok...tysen doesn't like the car, so we had to work at keeping him entertained, but we managed...once everyone got settled we walked across the street to the galleria mall for dinner. it would have been great, but tysen didn't take a nap, so he was quite the challenge. i think the others enjoyed the time, but needless to say he went to bed about 6:30 when we got back into our hotel.

here's audrey and logan at breakfast the next morning. thankfully, they have a free 'hot' breakfast, so it was really fun to go downstairs and eat with the family...

we had planned to go to the zoo, but it was a bit too cold, so we stayed indoors at the hotel pool. that was a lifesaver, and the kids loved getting to swim in the winter!

we went to chuck e. cheese for lunch. it was a madhouse, but we all had fun getting out and what kid doesn't love the games??

kenzie and tysen sharing some french fries...

g-pa and tysen

i crippled carleigh the first game, she destroyed me the 2nd, and sadly, i lost by 1 basket on the tiebreaker game....

tysen's version of how to play!

ian was a little shy...but still wanted to be in the picture with zach...

during naptime we got a chance to go visit granddad.

and that evening they came to the hotel to visit...
here's g-pa ('grandpa' is slowly changing to 'g-pa' per the kids)

me and auntie ann

the 'kazee' kids...

kazee family
granddad and myrtice, and dad, and aunt ann...then the 3 being the baby!

having breakfast with aubren on our last morning there...

home sweet 45 degree and rainy weather, so we had to be creative to burn off all that energy from 5 hours in the car!