Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Book Review ~ Momology: A Mom's Guide To Shaping Great Kids

Your go-to book for successful mothering.

Mothering is part art, part science, and always a work in progress! Backed by more than thirty years of research-based ministry at MOPS International, Momology is designed to help you be the unique mother God created you to be--because better moms make a better world.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

I am always looking for ways to be a better mom. I hope I never stop! Momology is a terrific resource for parenting and is full of tips and suggestions and life experiences.

The author has written this book in what she refers to as "nap sized bites", which I - the mother of a very busy 2 year old - certainly appreciated! Each section has four components: Field Study, Mom Stats and Voices, research information and the author's own experiences as a mother.

I liked all the tidbits of information, the statistics and the thought provoking questions at the end. I appreciate when a book has me thinking about it long after I've put it down.

While this is a great resource to read on your own, I think that if you read it with a friend or a group, you could get so much more out of it.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.


Book Review ~ Out of the Spin Cycle

Following Jesus shouldn't be just one more thing to do.

Motherhood sometimes feels like a list of expectations. You may be busy or even overwhelmed. But you are also strong and brilliant. And here's a secret: a lot of those things on your list of expectations are things Jesus never expected you to do on your own.

In Out of the Spin Cycle, author and speaker Jen Hatmaker takes the words and deeds of Jesus, adds the humor of a young mom's life, and offers messages of grace and encouragement. Covering areas such as worry, marriage, priorities, money, and the comparison trap, this dynamic Bible teacher brings Jesus's message alive in short, to-the-point devotionals for your busy life. This is a devotional for you--the woman inside the mom--the Bible student, the learner, the world-changer.

So put aside that to-do list for a moment and discover the ways Jesus can lighten your mother load.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

I absolutely loved this book.

Each chapter is it's own topic, and each topic has an applicable Bible passage that ties in. The author does a great job of explaining the passage and making it very "modern day".

She poses thought provoking and certainly conversation starting questions at the end of each devotional, along with a Step Out Of The Spin Cycle suggestion.

Author Jen Hatmaker is refreshingly funny and authentic as she shares her own mothering experiences. I loved her conversational style of writing. It felt like we were just sitting together, talking over a cup of coffee. I found myself nodding and smiling a lot throughout this book. It's a keeper for sure.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.


Tuesday's Treats ~ Frozen Lemonade Squares

With how hot it's been lately - everywhere, from what I'm hearing! ~ I thought this cool treat would be perfect to share with you this week.

You won't believe how easy this is to make!

You'll need:
9 Honeymaid Low Fat Honey Grahams, finely crushed (approx 1 1/4 cups)
1/3 cup of butter or margarine, melted
4 cups of frozen yogurt, softened
6 oz of frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed

Step One:
Mix graham crumbs and butter; press in the bottom of a 9 inch pan

Step Two:
Beat yogurt and lemonade with a mixer until well blended; pour over crust

Step Three:
Freeze until firm (at least 4 hours)

I told you it was easy!

This is a light and refreshing dessert that is perfect for a hot summer day.


Saturday, June 26, 2010

Saturday Night Sewing Project

I don't know what came over me today, but I was overcome by the urge to sew something. My beloved sewing machine, Sassy Susie, has been at my mom's house since my last sewing project.

So... I decided that today I would try to sew something all by myself, something I haven't done before. I have always sewn under parental supervision.

Hi Mom!

I've been told by a couple of people that pillowcases are easy to make, so that's what I decided to do.

Before we even started looking at fabrics, I was distracted by this piece of adorableness, just as I was when I was there last week:

I wondered if Sassie Susie would fit in it so I could transport her easily since I don't have a carrying case for her. The starting price was $45.99 marked down to $22.49.

I couldn't say no.

Good thing I didn't because Susie fits perfectly inside.


After looking around for a short bit, Julie and I chose these prints and I purchased a metre of each:

She liked that the pattern was summery. I liked that it was only $3.00 / metre.

We swung by my mom's to pick up my machine and headed home. Once the girls were in bed, I set up the ironing board and iron, and plugged Susie in.

I turned on my ipod and got into the zone.

I was really surprised at how quickly I finished the first pillowcase.

I wanted to squeal with self-satisfaction but didn't, because I didn't feel like putting the kids back to sleep again.

After fitting a pillow into the case, I discovered that not only was it too long, but it was too wide. I ripped out my stitches and took the width in by a few inches.

Here's Julie's pillowcase:

Oh yeah, I was on a roll, so I sewed Jordan's pillowcase as well:

Pretty easy!

Sam wants me to make one for him too, so I guess I'll be heading back to the fabric store tomorrow.

If you're looking for a weekend sewing project that doesn't take up too much time or effort, this is the way to go.


Friday, June 25, 2010

5QF ~ June 25

Dear YouTube, Please stop making me look like a moron in the still shots. Thanks. Love, Kate

Come play along at My Little Life!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Black And White Wednesday - June 23

I love this picture because it looks like Jordan was praying while sitting on the beach.

I think I'm cheating with this meme because Ian actually took this picture. Must give credit where credit is due!

Join in on the fun at The Long Road to China!


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Tuesday's Treats ~ Chocolate Malt Cake

Being that Father's Day was this past Sunday, I wanted to make today's treat something that Ian would like specifically. He loves Maltesers so I knew this cake would be perfect.

You'll Need:
1 chocolate boxed cake mix
1/3 cup of chocolate malted milk powder
Water, vegetable oil and eggs as called for on cake mix box
1 cup of whipping cream
1/4 cup of chocolate malted milk powder
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1 cup of Maltesers, if desired

Step One:
Heat oven to 350. Spray bottom of 15x10x1-inch pan with cooking spray.

Step Two:
In a large bowl, stir together cake mix and 1/3 cup of malted milk powder. Beat in water, oil and eggs with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes, scraping the bowl occasionally. Pour into pan.

Step Three:
Bake for 29-34 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool completely.

Step Four:
In a medium bowl, beat cream, 1/4 cup of malted milk powder and vanilla on medium until stiff peaks form. Spread over cake. Place Maltesers in a resealable freezer bag and crush with a meat mallet or rolling pin. Just before serving, top with crushed Maltesers.

Ian's rating? 8/10.



Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day

Father's Day is a bittersweet day for me.

When I was six years old, my dad moved out.

I was the only kid I knew that didn't have a dad living at home and for the first time in my life, I felt shame.

The kids on the street and at school were always asking me were my dad was, so I created a lie that he was a truck driver and was on the road for months and months at a time. I couldn't have them knowing that he didn't love me enough to stay with me.

Of course, just because he wasn't living at home with us didn't negate the love he felt for us....but try telling that to a little girl who believed with all of her heart that she wasn't good enough, and who would face a lifetime fighting against that inner voice that told her she just wasn't worth it.

I don't have memories of my father reading me bedtime stories, or tucking me in at night. I don't remember what it felt like to have my little hand tucked inside his big one. I don't remember what it felt like when he hugged me. I can't remember if he ever told me I was beautiful.

When I was 14, my father died suddenly. I never even got to say goodbye.

Oh Daddy... how I miss you. Even after all of these years, I miss you so much.

But the Lord is good. He sent me Ian.

I knew that Ian would be a wonderful father when I saw him with my 1 year old nephew for the first time. He was gentle, encouraging, loving and oh so fun.

Whenever we went anywhere, children would just gravitate to him. I don't think there is a child that has met Ian that hasn't loved him.

I can still remember how tiny Sam was when he was first born and he seemed even smaller in Ian's strong hands. He held him with such gentle care and I knew Sam would always be safe with him.

I remember the tears in his eyes when Julie was born. She was so small and delicate, and Ian held her so gently, as if she would break.

By the time Jordan arrived, I had had a front row seat to several years of watching Ian rocking the father role. I knew she would be well loved by him.

Like I said, I knew Ian would be a wonderful father, but he has exceeded my hopes, dreams and expectations in ways I can't find the words for.

He has coached little league baseball and soccer. He has kissed owies, and scared away monsters. He has played and encouraged and prayed over and loved these children.

Our Sam has grown into a kind and compassionate young boy under his father's loving care, and I know without a doubt that he will become a strong, compassionate and godly man. How could he not with Ian as his example?

Our girls, Julie and Jordan.... They are safe and secure in the knowledge that their father loves them. They know what it feels like to be told by their father that they are beautiful and worthy and delighted in.

Ian is tireless when it comes to loving on our children and he works so hard to provide for them, without a single complaint. He puts them before himself, so they always know they matter and are important.

He helps with school projects. He explains math. He builds bunk beds. He sources out the best video games. He brushes little girl hair. He taught Sam and Julie how to swim. He changes diapers. He blows bubbles. He shares his love for the Lord with them. He shares his beloved chicken wings. He cuddles them. He teaches the importance of laughter. He gives Sam girl advice. He reminds Julie that she will be a prize to the man she chooses to marry. He continues to take her to 3-D movies because he knows that one day she will overcome her fear and stay for the entire movie. He goes to Jordan during the night to soothe her when she has nightmares, even though he has to get up early to go to work. He hugs away the hurt when pets die.

He seldom says no. He spoils. He delights in his children and takes his role as father very seriously. He knows they are blessings from the Lord and he is committed to raising them up with a strong foundation in Christ. He encourages them to question what the Bible says, because he knows the answers are there.

Ian, I wish I had words to explain how you have healed the wounds in my heart, just by being such a loving father. Every time you hug them, or tell them you love them, or laugh with them, a piece of my heart is restored. I appreciate all that you do for us.

Thank you for being you, and for loving our children so well. You truly are the World's Greatest Dad, and we love you so much.


Friday, June 18, 2010

5QF ~ June 18

I was really looking forward to this weekend. We were going to spend the day with my mother at the cottage she rented on the beach, but now it's going to rain tomorrow so we won't be going.


I'm so disappointed.

Moving on to Mama M's Five Question Friday blog hop! I was going to vlog today but didn't have time to.

This week's questions are...

1. What is your favorite thing about summertime?


2. What is your ideal retirement location (if money didn't matter)?

Somewhere by a beach. Water soothes me.

3. Do you live in the same town you grew up in?

Yes. Although, it's gotten very busy and overcrowded. I'd like to move to Cow Country but I'd miss my family too much.

4. What nervous habit did you have as a child that you kicked to the curb before becoming an adult?

I was supposed to kick those habits to the curb before I became an adult??

5. What is the most embarrassing thing that happened to you while on the job?

When I worked, I was in Credit and Collections. I was working on a spreadsheet for a very large company, listing all of their overdue invoices. I made one little typo and instead of the company owing us $40,000 I had it listed as $400,000. That little error made it's way right to the president of the other company's desk. Everyone at that company, and the company I represented, was cross with me. I was SO embarrassed and was afraid I'd lose my job.

Happy Friday everyone!


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tuesday's Treats ~ Toffee Crunch Blondies

If you are looking for a super easy and quick treat to make, try these Toffee Crunch Blondies!

You'll Need:
1/2 cup of butter, softened
1 cup of brown sugar
2 eggs
2 cups of flour
1 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp of baking soda
1/4 tsp of salt
1 package of Skor Toffee Bits
1 cup of chocolate chips

Step One:
Beat butter, brown sugar and eggs until smooth

Step Two:
Add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well.

Step Three:
Add 1 cup of chocolate chips and 1 cup of Skor Chips

Step Four:
Spread evenly in a greased 13 x 9 inch pan and bake for 23-28 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and sprinkle remaining Skor Chips over top. Cut into squares

Perfect for a summer picnic or after school snack :-)


Monday, June 14, 2010

I've Reached My Limit For Drama Today

Just when I think I will never again have a blog worthy story to share with you, one of the kids or animals come through for me.

This afternoon I was cleaning my kitchen and had just cleared and swept the floor when the phone rang. It did that annoying three ring thing that tells me it's a telemarketer, so I kept going.

Seriously...if I'm doing housework I cannot afford to be interrupted because who knows when I'll get started again.

I started to wash the floor when the phone rang again. This time it was Ian calling from the office. He said he was on the other line with the alarm company and that our house alarm was going off.

Um... no it wasn't. All was quiet on the home front. Well, as quiet as things can be with a house full of children and pets.

Yes, they insisted, the alarm is sounding and no one is answering the phone.

Oops. I guess it wasn't a telemarketer calling after all.

Well it's not, I repeated. Then Ian realized it was the silent panic alarm thingy we keep upstairs in case of emergency. He asked if Jordan could have pushed it.

Sigh. Yes, of course she could have and more than likely did.

I didn't think that thing even worked.

He explained to the alarm company that our 2 year old likely set it off. They informed him that the police had been dispatched and were enroute, and could not call them back.


I may or may not have mentioned my obsession with police response times. While I should be concerned for the welfare of the party that had to call the police, in reality I am much more concerned with how long it took for them to get there.

Let me tell you. It didn't take long for them to arrive. I made it to the front door in time to see two cruisers come squealing in and stop in front of my house.

My neighbours certainly got an eyeful as they darted from their cars, hands on their weapons, shouting "Ma'am! Are you alright!"

It was like an episode of COPS.

I felt all sweaty.

I think I was old enough to be their mothers.

I have had a lot of drama today already. This was like the icing on the cake.

They kept trying to look past me into the house. I guess to see if someone was in there with me.

After asking for my identification to prove I lived here, they wrote down my information and started to leave.

One officer turned around on my lawn, lowered his sunglasses all David Caruso style and asked me one last time...

"Ma'am... are you sure you're ok?"

I felt like an ass.

And that is just a piece of the drama I had to endure today.

The End.


Friday, June 11, 2010

5QF ~ June 11

Special thanks to the folks at YouTube for showing this particular dorky picture

Come play along at My Little Life!


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rockin' The Cool

Last week Ian came home with a box of the coolest things ever.

Well, if diapers can be cool, that is.

And yes, yes they can.

Take a look at these.

They are so cute!

I wish I had a picture of Jordan wearing them, but alas...I do not.

So, I googled images and found this video and it's hilarious.

Adorable, right?

Do you have these where you live? I don't know if in the grand scheme of things if this is as thrilling as I think it is, because the US often has cooler products than Canada does.

Too bad these are only a limited edition. I'd love to see a more girly style.

I have not been a fan of Huggies in the past but these little diapers are priceless. What will they think of next??


Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Checking In

I think that if you look up the word "slacker" in the dictionary you will find a picture of yours truly.

Sorry about that.

It's not that I don't have things to talk about, because if you know me, then you know I always have something to say.

I haven't been feeling my best lately and I don't want to whine about it to you guys. Well, I do actually....but I won't. ;-) No one likes a whiner, right?

I went to see my doctor a week or so ago to discuss a couple of concerns, namely my constant and ever growing fatigue, headaches, dizziness and increasing hair loss. He told me I am iron deficient. Lovely.

At least it isn't Lupus. Or West Nile Virus. Or worse.

I need to look into vitamins.

A couple of weeks ago I was looking on Craigslist to see if I could find a Kitchenaid mixer cheaper than what I'd pay for it in a store. I couldn't. But what I did find made me laugh. Someone was selling a toaster that only works on one side. I don't know why that made me laugh so hard but it did.

I have letters to mail on my desk and I keep forgetting to mail them.

My favourite aunt, who also happens to be my Godmother, arrives tomorrow for a visit. She'll be with us to the end of July. I'm really looking forward to hugging her.

Willow's Pica is in full force. He has eaten a chunk out of the wall, the corner of my bookcase, the bottom handle of Jordan's drawer and the spout off her favourite sippy cup. He also stole Sam's dinner on Sunday as well as licked our guest's milk.

Needless to say, we had one sick puppy this week. Again.

He is shedding all over my house. I'd forgotten how much I hated dog fur. I brushed him for over a half hour on our front porch, and I was still pulling off as much fur at the end as I was in the beginning.

Wills and I seem to share a hair loss issue.

I wonder if I were to use one of the attachments for my vacuum (#16 in case you were wondering) to de-shed him. Would that hurt him? Would it work??

This weekend I am attending a baby shower for a dear friend of mine and have no idea as to what to give her. In the evening we're attending a bbq with several friends. I need a babysitter for Jordan because I am too old to chase her around. Also, I don't want people to know that I can't control my children. ;-)

Well, these random thoughts are all I've got for now. I'm hoping to thrill you with a vlog soon.

Did you laugh when I said "thrill"? Or maybe you gagged a little, like I did.


Over and out.


Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Tuesday's Treats ~ Cake Balls

One of the easiest treats to make in the entire world are Cake Balls.

Some of you may remember that there was a time when I didn't think they were so easy to make! You can read about that fiasco here.

I have yet to have someone try one and not love them.

You'll Need:
1 boxed cake mix (I usually use Devils Food but you can really get creative)
1 container of frosting (I use chocolate)
Chocolate for melting (I use Wilton's meltables. A little pricey but so worth it)

Step One:
Prepare and bake cake according to instructions on the box
Let cool for 30 minutes

Step Two:
Crumble warm cake into a large bowl. Empty contents of the container of frosting. Mix well. You'll have to get your hands in there, so be prepared!

Step Three:
Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place on cookie sheet. Freeze for 1 hour.

Step Four:
Melt chocolate into a bowl. Dip balls into melted chocolate and turn gently to coat. Place on another waxed paper lined cookie sheet. Once all are coated, place tray in the refrigerator to harden

Step Five:
Pour a glass of milk and enjoy your efforts!

I get a lot of requests for these, and even had a co-worker of Ian's order two dozen from me! Crazy!

There are all sorts of flavour combinations that you could try. I have found that Red Velvet is very popular, although I haven't tried them yet.

Let me know if you tried them, and what flavours you like the best!


Saturday, June 05, 2010

What The WHAT!? Save The Drama For Yo Mama!

Yesterday I was at my mom's house visiting with her and my sister. I checked my cell to see what time it was and saw that I had an email.

I read it twice and felt sick to my stomach.

This is what it said:

Good Day,

This is the only way I could contact you for now,I want you to be very careful about this and keep this secret with you until I make out space for us to see. You have no need of knowing who I am or where I am from.

I know this may sound very surprising to you but it's the situation. I have been paid some ransom in advance to terminate you with some reasons listed to me by my employer. It's someone I believe you call a friend.

I have followed you closely for a while now and have seen that you are innocent of the accusations he leveled against you. Do not contact the police or try to send a copy of this to them, because if you do, I will know, and I might be pushed to do what I have been paid to do. Besides, this is the first time I turn out to be a betrayer in my job.I took pity on you,that is why I have made up my mind to help you if you are willing to help yourself.

Now listen, I will arrange for us to see face to face, but before that, I need $12,000. I will come to your home or you determine where you wish we meet; I repeat, do not arrange for the cops and if you play hard to get, it will be extended to your family. Do not set any camera to cover us or set up any tape to record our conversation, my employer is in my control now.

Payment details will be provided for you to make a part payment of $5000 first, which will serve as guarantee that you are ready to you co-operate, then I will post a copy of the video tape that contains his request for me to terminate you which will be enough evidence for you to take any legal action against him before he employs another person for the job. You will pay the balance of $7000 once you receive the tape.

Warning; do not contact the police, make sure you stay indoors once it is 7.30pm until this whole thing is sorted out. If you neglect any of these warnings, you will have yourself to blame. You do not have much time, so get back to me immediately.

Note:I will advise you keep this to yourself alone, not even a friend or a family member should know about it because it could be one of them.


Oh yeah, say it with me: What the WHAT!?

I read it to my mother (who laughed!) and my sister (who started freaking out). I won't lie...I was kind of freaking out too.

Then Ian called. I told him I had just received a death threat and he was all "What!? Forward it now!"

(So hot, gotta tell you ;-) He protects what's his!)

While Ian googled the email address, I reminded my still-laughing mother of my daily, ever growing uneasy feeling that I was running out of time/going to die soon. She laughed more.

It's amazing how fast my mind was racing. There are a couple of IP addresses that stalk my blog multiple times a day. Was it one of them? Was someone looking for me on Facebook, found my blog address and got my email address from there?

I was in the middle of logging in to the blogger dashboard to shut down my blog when Ian told me the whole thing was a hoax that had been circulating for the last two years.


Like I don't have enough to worry about these days!

So, I share this with you to tell you that if you receive this email a) it's a hoax (duh Katie) and b) do not reply to the email because they will likely add you to a spam/virus listing.

/Public Service Announcement


Friday, June 04, 2010

5QF ~ June 4

Thank goodness it's Friday. This week scored really high in the Suckage Department so it will be nice to just gather together and lick our wounds this weekend.

Being that it's Friday, I am going to participate in the beautiful and charming Mama M's Five Question Friday. She hosts this fun thingy on her blog My Little Life.

One of these questions is MINE! ('s #2)

1. If you could go back to college would you change your major? Or, if you were to go to college right now...what major would you choose?

Oh yes. I took General Arts & Science in college, which allows you to graduate with nothing important. It's an artsy fartsy, get in touch with your feelings type of program. I had a lot of fun but didn't learn much. Great years ;-)

If I were to go back, I would take Nursing. It's such a noble profession (my Mama and Mama M are nurses, FYI) don't you think? Never mind that I can't stand blood, barf, whiners, fakers or complainers.

2. What do you love most about your home?

I love all of the windows - 18 of them, in fact. Its full of sunshine, and I can watch the sun set from my kitchen windows, or see the fall colours. It's lovely.

3. What types of books do you like to read (if you like to read at all)?

I'll read just about anything except Science Fiction.

4. What is the grossest thing you've ever eaten?

Fried Calamari. I was at a business lunch and we were ordering appetizers. I heard someone order it but when it came it looked just like onion rings and I felt a little excited because I love them so. As soon as I bit into it, reality came crashing down and I was stuck with it in my mouth. I chewed that thing forever until I couldn't take it anymore, so I daintily* put it in my napkin.

*I like to remember it this way, it may have occurred a little less so in real life... I admit to nothing.

5. If you HAD to be a character on a TV show, whom would you be?

I'd like to be Jamie Somers on The Bionic Woman. Yes, I'm aware that this show is no longer on television but I'm tellin' ya...I'd love to run like her and have a bionic ear so I'd hear everything. But I'd want that awesome bionic music playing whenever I ran anywhere.

That's it! Want to play too? I don't blame you! Head on over to My Little Life and play along!


Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Black & White Wednesday ~ June 2

Join in on the fun at The Long Road to China!


The Last Christian - Giveaway Winner

Thank you to those that entered to win a copy of The Last Christian.

The winner was chosen by and that winner is:



Please contact me at within 24 hours to let me know where to send this book.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!


Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Tuesdays Treats ~ Truffle Topped Cupcakes With Caramel Frosting

You'll need:
1 yellow cake mix
1 cup of butter, softened
1 jar (12-1/4 oz) of caramel ice cream topping
3 tablespoons of milk
1-1/2 tablespoons of vanilla extract
6 cups of icing sugar
3/4 cup of chopped hazelnuts
Assorted truffles

Step One:
Prepare and bake cupcakes according to package directions. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely

Step Two:
For frosting, in a large bowl, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the caramel topping, milk and vanilla until smooth. Gradually add the icing sugar; beat until smooth

Step Three:
Pipe frosting onto cupcakes. Top with a truffle
Optional: Press chopped hazelnuts along edges of cupcake

A very sweet treat!