Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Landon, Part 4...Food and Recipes!

Landon cooks with me often. His absolute favorite thing to help me prepare is scrambled eggs. Here is our recipe for scrambled eggs:

2 eggs
Salt and pepper
A splash of milk (We use skim milk)
Cheddar cheese (enough to cancel out all the calories you save using skim milk)

Put loads of butter into a skillet.
Mix all the above ingredients. (To beat our eggs, we start by punching a fork through the egg yolks. It helps them mix more quickly and evenly.)
Pour the egg mixture into the skillet and scramble on low heat. (The lower heat, the better they will be. Put in the extra will be worth it!)

Landon likes his scrambled eggs on toasted bread for an egg sandwich.

And here is one more bonus recipe for today. Landon invented this recipe about 3 weeks ago. I think it's disgusting because I dislike raisins very much. But he loves raisins. Enjoy!

Raisin Sandwich:
2 slices of banana
1 raisin

Put the raisins in between the slices of banana. And there you have it. A raisin sandwich.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Landon, Part 3

These Are a Few of Landon's Favorite Things:
(Imagine me singing that like Julie Andrews' "Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music really loudly and Landon rolling his eyes at me.)




Amusement Park Rides

(Halfway through writing this blog, Blogger started acting up on me. If it were working, I would have also added pictures of Landon reading, working puzzles, and playing Gladiator with his Daddy.)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Landon, Part 2

Daddy and I love you so much our hearts almost explode when we think about you.
There is never a dull moment when you're around.
You're just plain fun!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Landon, Part 1

This is Landon's last week being four years old. Next Sunday, April 4th, we'll have a little five-year-old on our hands. In honor of the coolest 4-year-old Trevett on the planet, my blog this week will be obsessed with him. I'm going to kick it off with pictures of each birthday. Enjoy!

Landon's birthday: April 4, 2005
Party Theme: Praise God he's finally here!

Landon's 1st Birthday
Party Theme: One

Landon's 2nd Birthday
Party Theme: Soccer

Landon's 3rd Birthday
Party Theme: Cars

Landon's 4th Birthday
Party Theme: Sports (and firemen, too, I guess? When did he change into a
firefighter costume? I definitely don't remember that.)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Highlights From Our Week

A few highlights with pictures:
1. This is what seven-months-old looks like. To celebrate, I put Connor in a highchair for the first time. It lasted about 3 seconds. He looked too old and it made me sad, so I took him out. Please don't fuss at me. I'm allowed to be a little emotional because not only is he a month older, but Landon is only days away from being 5. Just give me my girlie moment, please.
2. Connor has no teeth yet but they HAVE to be making their entrance into the world any day now. He loves to chew on his fingers, his teether, ANYTHING.
And he drools all the live long day.
3. In honor of Dr.Seuss Week, I made green eggs just as Landon requested. I'm not the biggest Dr.Seuss fan in the world, but look at his smile. How could I resist?
I love Landon in my house. I love Landon holding a mouse.
I love Landon on a plane. I love Landon in the rain.
4. Reagan's cousin, Haley, came over today for a playdate. Haley's birthday was in December. Yep, she definitely opened her birthday present from us today, March 25th. Oh, well. :)

A few highlights without pictures:
1. On Monday, a lady in my step-aerobics class fell down. I laughed and pointed a lot because, seriously, who falls down in step-aerobics?!?!

2. On Tuesday, I walked Riverfront Park with my dear friend, Megan, her babe, and two of my babes. Gorgeous! Gorgeous! Gorgeous! I think I might be a little bit addicted to that park now.

3. On Tuesday and Wednesday night, I attended the River Springs Elementary School Talent Show dress rehearsal. I saw loads of my former students and it did my heart a lot of good to hug the necks of kids, moms, and dads who I don't see as often as I'd like but who I love, love, love to pieces!

4. On Wednesday, I let Reagan watch "Aladdin" which is very rare because I'm a huge meanie mommy who only lets my kids watch television on Fridays. Did you know that if you go 90 minutes without blinking, your eyes turn really red and water comes out of them like crazy? Reagan does.

5. On Thursday, my really mean in-laws made me eat lunch at McDonald's. I gave up fried foods until Easter and seeing/smelling those french fries was very tempting. If you see Mr. and Mrs. Trevett please give them a piece of your mind in my honor.
(I just used a great deal of hyperbole. My in-laws are awesome. I love them dearly.)

6. After a 15-minute drive in the car today, Reagan said, "Mommy, as soon as we get out of the car, will you give me a big hug? I need a mommy hug." I am blessed.

I hope you have had a beautiful week loving on your friends and family. Have a lovely weekend!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Crock Pot Chili

This recipe was given to me by my friend, Lori, several years ago. It's super yummy and very easy.

1 lb. ground beef- browned and drained
1 can chili beans
1 can kidney beans
3 15oz. cans tomato sauce
1 15oz. can tomato paste
1 medium onion chopped
1 green pepper chopped
2 cloves garlic chopped
3 TB. chili powder
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. cumin
salt to taste

Dump all of that goodness into a crock pot. Stir and cover. Cook on high 4-6 hours or on low 6-8 hours.

I serve it with cheese and sour cream.

This makes a TON of chili. It freezes well.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Lately, I've been struggling with patience. I'm sure it has nothing to do with the fact that I have 3 children under the age of 5 or the fact that I'm a great sinner who is reminded daily of my need for grace.

Yesterday, my pastor preached a thoughtful sermon on patience. I definitely had some "Ah-ha" moments and big reminders of some areas in which I need to be more obedient. Pastor Mike's sermon prompted me to make a list of specific areas where I lose my patience. Be prepared. I'm being real. Some of these areas are super silly. Some are bigger. But they're where I'm at in this season of life. They're the day to day stuff that brings this struggle of impatience to life for me each and every day.

Here are a few:
1. I lose my patience when Reagan takes her clothes off and puts on a princess dress right before I need to be walking out the door to take Landon to school. It wouldn't be a big deal if we were coming straight home, but we are usually heading to the gym after I drop Landon off, and the gym doesn't allow crowns and high heels and wands and princess dresses. So, I lose my patience as I re-dress her in pants and a shirt.

2. I am losing my patience with how long it is taking me to get my pregnancy weight off. I know it's the whole third child thing. I know I had a c-section. Blah, blah, blah. But I'm ready to fit back into all my clothes. And I'm not there yet.

3. I lose my patience when the lady in front of me in line at the grocery store argues with the cashier over a coupon that will save her 50 cents. I sort of want to just tell the lady, "I'LL GIVE YOU FIFTY CENTS IF YOU WILL JUST GO!"

4. I am really passionate about advocating for kids and I see a lot of change that needs to happen in schools. I want all of that change to happen right-this-instant. I lose my patience when I see change happening more slowly than I want.

5. Landon loves this book about an ostrich named Howard. LOVES it. When we visit the zoo and he sees the ostrich, he references Howard. It is definitely one of my least favorite books on the planet. It lasts forever. I lose my patience reading it to him. It's just so long and boring.

Yesterday, I was reminded that the 3 biggest blockers of patience are pride, arrogance, and haste. Very convicting! All of the areas I struggle with are associated with either my own pride and arrogance or being in a huge hurry!

Favorite quote of the sermon: "Impatience is rooted in a distrust of God." In the big stuff as well as the seemingly small stuff that is so true!

So, I'm working on being obedient to God by exhibiting the patience He has given me. In the big stuff. In the small stuff. In every aspect of my life.

It's a minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day act of obedience. And it's waaaaaaay hard.
But one thing I love about how hard it is is that it's a continual reminder that I'm not God so I need God.

I LOVE that I was talking to one of my best friends on the planet about patience today. We were talking on our cell phones. She was in her neighborhood. I was on my way to class. We were having this great discussion about how convicting the sermon was and in mid-sentence she yelled at the driver of the car next to her that had just given her a dirty look and maybe a dirty gesture, "I DIDN'T KNOW WHERE YOU WERE GOING!" And for the next 5 minutes, she seriously thought about going back to the driver and giving her a little piece of her mind. And then we realized all of that happened as we were having a conversation about patience! What a real moment. Hilarious. Convicting. And REAL.

Praying for obedience in the area of patience.
Grateful for God's grace.

Friday, March 19, 2010

My Week

10 Things That Happened This Week:

1. On Monday, during Cardio Step, I was doing awesome. Really feeling it. I even recognized a muscle from my "pre-pregnant with Connor" days. We had a nice little chat. Then, in front of 20 other women, I tripped over my step and landed on my behind. All the women gasped. A friend came over to help me up. Another lady showed me her technique for wiping dirt off her step with a Kleenex. I was not embarrassed at all.

2. Also on Monday, Connor decided that he can now sit up on his own. Not for a long time. And not without looking really scared. But still. On his own.

3. On Tuesday, I woke Connor up from his nap, drove to Landon's preschool to pick him up, pulled into the carpool line and noticed there were zero cars. About 2 minutes into me feeling like the best mom on the planet for being the first one to carpool line instead of the last, I realized why.....I had looked at the clock....the one that I thought I had NOT changed for Daylights Savings, but actually I HAD changed it. So I was an hour early to pick Landon up. I had not showered, I did not have on what women should have on when they go out in public, and I looked like a huge mess. But I cared not even a little bit because I was not sitting there for an hour. So, I found a jacket in my car, put it on, slicked my dirty hair into a ponytail, waltzed my beautiful self into school, checked Landon out an hour early, and was in the McDonald's drive-thru for lunch at 10:57am.

4. On Wednesday, I took half an orange, squeezed it into a Ziploc bag, and drank the juice with a straw. With about 30 other women over the age of 25. And there were NO kids around. Yep, that was definitely the weirdest part of my week.

5. Also on Wednesday, Connor decided to get another ear infection. And I went to CVS like a big girl and did not get a speeding ticket (or a warning!).

6. On Thursday, Landon played his very first baseball game ever. I can't look at Landon in baseball pants and not smile. I told Nathan the next time we get into an argument we need to just command Landon to change into his baseball clothes. It's absolutely precious.

7. Also on Thursday, Landon told his friend's mom (his friend is a girl whose birthday party we attended a few weeks ago) that he could only invite boys to his birthday party because "Mommy's house isn't big enough for the whole class and she said she can't afford it."

8. On Friday, Connor had diarrhea all over the YMCA. I had to leave my class early and I got lots of mean looks from the childcare workers. They did not care for my theory that his diarrhea was only because he's on an antibiotic for his ear infection. Connor thought it was hilarious.

9. Also on Friday, I took the kids to the zoo. It was gorgeous! But I do need to just take a minute and say that it's absolutely ridiculous that it costs money to do anything there anymore. Want to feed a giraffe? That'll be $2.00. Want to ride a train? That'll be $5.00. Ooh! Here's a huge rock climbing tower. That's gonna cost you! Same thing with the Merry-go-round. I felt like all morning I had to say "no, no, no, no, no." The kids handled it beautifully. But it was still kind of annoying. Enough complaining. The day was really fun and absolutely beautiful. Oh, and Connor decided that it's also hilarious to have diarrhea like crazy at the zoo.

9. Friday afternoon I took a nap. A really hard nap. I dreamed a whole bunch and jumped when Landon came down the stairs. I also had lots of creases on my face for a few hours afterward. It felt like a Sunday afternoon but it wasn't. It was a Friday! That means I get to do that again in two days!

10. And tonight I'm cooking tacos and we're having Family Night at Home!

I hope all of you had a wonderful week full of laughs!

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to my sisters-in-law, April and Beth, two of the most sincere, gentle, and caring women I've ever known. Thank you for loving your brother so very much and for loving me like a sister!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Orange Salad

Super simple and such a yummy side.

1 large package orange Jello
8 oz. small curd cottage cheese
1 8-oz. can crushed pineapple (drained)
1 can mandarin oranges
1 8-oz. tub cool whip

Mix Jello, cottage cheese, pineapple, and oranges. Gently add cool whip. Chill before serving.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happy Birthday, Parker Hewitt

Today Parker Hewitt would have been 6 years old. What an amazing birthday he is spending with Jesus Christ. Please pray for Craig and Crystal as today will be very difficult for them.

This is a special picture to me. This was the day Landon was born. Parker had just turned one and when he came to visit his new little friend in the hospital we joked that Landon was almost as big as he was. They came to the hospital late that night (probably around 7 or 8pm) so Parker was already in his pajamas and ready for bed. He is such a handsome boy.

Happy Birthday, Parker!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Picture Day

How Taking My Kids to Picture People is like Going to the Gym:
1. I sweat a TON.
2. I lift heavy things over and over again.
3. It's not always fun but it's worth the hard work.
4. It takes about an hour.
5. I'm exhausted when it's over.
6. People comment on my amazing biceps. (Oh, wait. I made that part up.)

I chose to opt out of the part where they asked me if I wanted to pay them $1,000,000 to have the right to post the pictures online. So, I did a little sketch to share with you. This is pretty much identical to the photographs. Didn't they turn out great? I especially love how genuine their smiles are. And doesn't Reagan look so old? I can't believe she'll be 3 years old soon! I've got some cute kids!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Learners Need Time

Last night our family went for a walk. At every water drain in our neighborhood, Reagan, my two-year-old, slowed down as she walked past. She stared at it. It was something she was unfamiliar with and trying to figure out what it was forced her to slow down. Waaaay down. Her lips moved as she began thinking aloud. And that happened at every drain we passed.

I am currently reading Super Freakonomics. It includes many statistics so I turn the pages very slowly to give myself time to take it all in. When a passage confuses me, I reread it more slowly than the first time. I often look up and think for several minutes before continuing to the next paragraph or chapter.

I will never forget my second year of teaching. It was the first week of school and I was holding a class meeting on what we would need to grow as learners. I asked the question, "What do you need from this me this year to help you grow? What do you need from each other?" After a few responses, a very timid, thoughtful child with big brown eyes looked up and said, "I need time."

Learners need time! Time to process. Time to question. Time to respond. Time to hypothesize. Time to talk. Time to read. Time to think.

Learners do not need to be rushed from place to place, center to center, project to project, or task to task. They need time to soak in, camp on, reflect on, (whatever you want to call it) all they are learning.

So whether we are teachers with a room full of students, moms raising little ones, managers leading salesmen, or coaches working with athletes, we owe it to the learners in our care to give them time.

This is one of my absolute favorite quotes concerning the importance of time as it relates to literacy:

“Time spent doing what’s essential for literacy allows students to relate to the curriculum in a meaningful way. Without time to experience what it feels like to be a reader and a writer, a strong connection between students and literacy just won’t happen. We demonstrate what we value in our classrooms by giving it attention and time. A child’s relationship to literacy deserves both.”

- From More than Meets the Eye by Donna Skolnick

Sausage Casserole

My family loves, loves, LOVES breakfast for supper!
This is a really easy recipe that is yummy for breakfast, brunch, or supper! Enjoy.

4 slices white bread
1 lb. sausage
1 c. cheddar cheese
6 eggs
2 c. whole milk
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dry mustard

Remove crust from bread. Cut bread into cubes and put in bottom of a 9 x 12 casserole dish. (Spray with cooking spray, first.)
Brown sausage, drain, and add on top of bread.
Sprinkle cheese on top of sausage.
Beat eggs and stir in milk, salt, and dry mustard. Put on top of cheese.
Cover and let it sit in fridge overnight or all day (depending on when you plan to serve it).
Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

This conversation actually happened. In the carpool line. Today.

Me: Landon, today you have tumbling class.

Landon: No, Mrs.Slusher said we have tumbling class tomorrow.

Me: Did she tell you that yesterday?

Landon: The last time we were at school she said, "Tomorrow you have tumbling class."

Me: That was yesterday. So that means you have tumbling class today.

Landon: So 'tomorrow' means 'today'?

Me: No, tomorrow means the next day after today. Yesterday she said you had tumbling class tomorrow. So now that we're in tomorrow, it's today.

Landon: (Complete silence and looking at me with eyes glazed over.)

Me: I have no idea what I just said. I love you, Landon.

Landon: I love you too, Mommy. (Then he got out of the car and walked into school.)

Monday, March 8, 2010

While I was taking my Sunday nap......

....Landon rotated my tires. Yep. He's pretty awesome.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

I heart books.

I'm a little bit (a lot) obsessed with books. I love to read them. I love to smell them. I love to feel the covers. My favorite kind of cover is one that has sort of a matte finish with really big, shiny, smooth, letters for the title. Dan Brown books meet my cover test most of the time. So do both of the Freakonomics books.

I love to stack books really high on the end table next to my bed until they literally fall over.

I love to make lists of books I want to read and then put a check mark by the title after I read it. (I know. NERD.)

I have rules for how I read:

1. I have to find somebody that knows my book who I can talk with while/after I read it.
2. I never, ever read a book without someone recommending it. I am not a risk-taker when it comes to reading new books. I don't have time to read a book I'm not going to enjoy or get something out of.
3. If I'm at home, I have to read under a blanket or comforter. Have to. And I have to be in my bed or in the chair that sits in the corner of my den. The only exception to this rule is when I'm reading to my kids. That can happen anywhere.
4. This isn't a rule, just a bonus: If Nathan is reading at the same time as me, my reading enjoyment goes up by like a billion percent.
5. I always, ALWAYS read two books at the same time. Not simultaneously. Just together. Like I'll read an "easy" book on the same timeline I'm reading a more challenging one. Never just one book. Never 3 books. Always 2.

Until this week. I broke rule #5. I was doing my usual....reading my 2 books. And then I made a trip to Barnes and Noble, found 3 more books I just absolutely had to have, and started reading them. So, now I'm reading 5 books. Five. I've got them divided into categories. (Again. NERD.)

I've got my "I can read this one while I'm riding the bike at the gym" book.
I've got an "Ahhh, I'm in bed and this is what I can read until I drift off to sleep" book.
I've got 2 "Highlighters and post-its are everywhere b/c every other sentence is an amazingly thoughtful quote and I HAVE to meet this author" books.
And I've got a "My 4-year-old is tough and I need some advice NOW" book.

If you've read to this point, you either:
a. think I'm the biggest nerd on the planet.
b. heart books as much as I do.
c. have nothing else to do.
d. want to know what books I'm reading.
e. are my mom and have to read all my blog entries because that's what moms do.

If you answered "d", here you go:

The Schools our Children Deserve Book Cover

SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance

The Well-Behaved Child: Discipline that Really Works!

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Teacher Makes the Difference

Two years ago, I took a step aerobics class for the very first time. I was a bit nervous so I told the instructor that I was new. She nodded her head at me and class began. Honestly, I have NEVER been so lost in my entire life. She used words like "rocking horse" and "repeater". It was a different language. The class lasted an hour, and for at least half that time I stood still with my mouth hanging open. It was the worst workout of my life. At one point, a rude lady walked over to me and asked, "Can you even see the instructor?" I felt helpless and like the biggest klutz on the planet. But the thing is, I'm not a klutz. I'm athletic. I'm coordinated. But because I was in new territory I needed a TEACHER to TEACH me.

Well, fast forward two years. My friend, Karen, asked me to come to step aerobics. I said, "Absolutely not! I tried it two years ago and the teacher didn't care about me at all! I'm perfectly content with my other classes!" I told her about my experience two years ago and she immediately said, "Well, you should try the class that meets on Mondays. Erin is the instructor and she's great." So, very reluctantly, I showed up to class on Monday. I told Erin I was new. She immediately walked over, introduced herself, and gave me some pointers before class began. As class started, she made eye contact with me as if to say, "I know you're new at this. I'm going to help you." She used language I understood and modeled the routine. One hour later, I had experienced one of the best workouts of my life!

So, what was the difference? Was it the gym? Nope. Same gym. Was it the time of day? Nope. I work out that time of day every day. Was it my fitness level? Nope! In fact, I'm in worse shape now than I was two years ago because I just had a baby a few months ago! The difference was the TEACHER.

This is what is happening every single day in schools. There are many kids hating every second of their school experience because there are no teachers TEACHING them. And there are kids loving every second of their school experience because day after day, teachers are meeting those kids where they are and taking them where they can not go alone.

All the research on education points to the fact that, more than any other factor, the teacher is the one that makes the difference. If you have a child in school and you feel that he is not being taught, advocate! Meet with the teacher or an administrator. Do your research. Because, like it or not, your child's teacher is making a HUGE difference in his life, for the good or for the bad.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Barbecue Chicken

This recipe belongs to my Aunt Sue. It's super easy and delicious.

This has never happened to me, but here's a tip: While you're getting it out of the oven, be careful to not to drop it because if you do, I promise the dish will break into a million pieces and you'll be cleaning BBQ chicken off of your oven, kitchen floor, walls, etc. for quite some time. I'm not speaking from experience. It's just a little piece of advice that popped into my brain this morning for no reason at all. I've never dropped the chicken. Ever.

3 T ketchup
2 T vinegar (I use apple cider vinegar)
1 T lemon juice
2 T worcestershire sauce
2 T melted margerine
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dry mustard
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. red pepper
1/4 cup water

Combine all of that goodness and pour it over about 4-8 uncooked chicken breasts
in a large casserole dish.
Cover with aluminum foil.
Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour and a half.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Congratulations, Jake and Zienna.

Let me tell you about Sally. She's the kind of friend that, when I call her to say I'm thinking about ordering a cookie cake for the Bachelor Finale, not only does she not laugh at my idea but she helps me think of the perfect thing for the cookie to say and she picks it up from the cookie cake store and she brings it to my house and she eats it with me.

She's the kind of person that, when asked by the 16-year-old boy standing nervously behind the cookie cake store counter if everything is spelled correctly, responds with "Yep. Looks perfect."

Basketball Season

Top 5 things I have learned about 4 and 5 year old basketball:
1. Kids love the snack at the end of the game more than the actual game.
2. It is not uncommon to see a child lose interest in playing basketball and, instead, begin to flap his arms like a bird or walk on the black line along the perimeter of the court or do a dance move in the center of the court. (To be fair, I only used examples from MY four-year-old.)
3. Nathan Trevett deserves a bajillion dollars for coaching 4 and 5 year olds.
4. Some kids that play in the 4 and 5 year old basketball league are actually 6 or 7 years old and have really big calf muscles and score all the points for their team which makes our team lose by about 20 points.
5. Since the refs don't really care if the kids ever really dribble, it's best to just pick up the ball and run as fast as possible to the goal.