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Pumpkin Guts...

As much as I enjoy celebrating Halloween, we're not really big pumpkin carvers. I think it's because the girls are not really big on the mess that is pumpkin carving...mainly the sticking their hands inside a slimy pumpkin to pull out it's guts part. (Need proof? Watch this.) But this year we have special pumpkins from Nebraska that were grown by the girls' Great Grandpa, so there was no question as to if there would be carving or not.

I'm thankful for Scott's help in both getting the pumpkins ready for carving (which some how ended up being my job) and a little clean-up detailing after I got the designs cut in.

We cheated a little with the design step, using free templates we printed from cyberspace rather than coming up with original designs. But in the end the girls were each very happy with their chosen designs and that's all that matters. After cleaning up I washed and roasted the seeds, half of which I spiced with some salt, smoked paprika, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, and Sarracha. The are only slightly addicting.

(Now if only we had a handle on this year's costumes.)

Happy haunting all!



My Most Read Thoughts


Today while I sat in a classroom supervising students as they worked on their math assignments, I watched Lexi through the window enjoying time with her friends during recess. My heart smiled.

Those moments, moments of learning and carefree fun, those are the moments that SHOULD make up a school day. As a Mom, and an elementary school employee, my heart is breaking over the news and images coming out of Connecticut today. 
I send my kids off to school everyday without a second thought that they will return safely come day's end, just as I'm sure each one of those parents in Newtown did this morning.
Every day I walk into my school for work without a second thought to my personal safety, just as I'm sure each of those teachers, paras, custodians, sectretaries, etc in Newtown did this morning. 
Theories will be published. Evidence will be presented. Words will be exchanged about gun control and the need for change in our current culture of violence. I don't suspec…

DIY: Reusable Produce Bags

With Earth Day festivities gearing up for tomorrow, I thought I'd take a moment to post a short DIY tutorial on making your own reusable cloth produce bags. (Tutorial inspired by my favorite crafty mom blog, Crazy Mom Quilts. Produce bags inspired by running into my friend Laura at the grocery store while she was stuffing her produce into these.) This is my next step in the fight against the excessive use of plastic bags.

Our family has been making small environmentally minded changes in our daily lives over the past few years. We use reusable shopping bags. We've stopped buying/using Ziploc bags and plastic wrap. I'm trying to commute around town via bike more. I'm being more mindful about where the food we buy comes from and how it was produced. We more often hang our laundry on the line to dry in the spring and summer instead of just throwing it in the dryer. (Which is convenient at the moment since our dryer has decided to quit drying.) As we use up chemically clean…

Sunday Morning Silly...

Once in a while Dando's curiosity urges him to venture off the bookshelf so he check out other toys in the house.

I think he thinks Froggy is missing a few marbles.