Wednesday, December 29, 2010

30 by 30 #3

THIS #3 is a tough one, but will be so rewarding.

I have once again started the South Beach Diet - phase 1. For those who think it's awful, it really isn't bad. I get to try new recipes while controlling my sugar cravings and losing weight. WIN WIN! Sure, I'll start wanting to bite in to a juicy apple by day 10, but then I'll only have 4 days to go. Anyway, you can keep up with me on my other blog.

Here is my request:

Send me some good egg-no-carb recipes. (using veggies would be great as well) I will get SO BORED of eggs.

I appreciate it!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010


From the Montague Family

Sweet Layla Girl - almost 15 months

Chill Jack Jack - 3 1/2

Silly Joshy Washy - almost 5!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Caption Contest!!

(Yes Larrie, I totally ripped this idea from you!)

The winner from our last contest was Jamie!! Your prize: a HUGE kiss blown all the way from Wisconsin! Congrats.

Before you start brainstorming,

I mean, there was a definite reason I went for my camera!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Everything leads back to the PRESENTS

Josh has found a way to turn EVERY conversation in a direction that always ends with him begging to "open just one present!" Really, this is a skill.

Me: Josh, you can't just invite yourself to someone else's house. You can ask him to play here.

Josh: But I don't like our house.

Me: Do you want to go live somewhere else?

Josh: Well, maybe our house would be more fun if we opened those presents. (pointing to the ones from family, waiting to be opened)


Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Nicest

I just came from a neighbor's home, who I just met, and THIS plate is what she gave me. Seriously? She is the last of the 4 neighbors on our circle to meet and really sweet.

I count 13 varieties!!

And this was the night of our HUGE storm. It was a ton that night, but the next morning we found 26 inches of snow, with 3 feet of snow drifts!!
Josh was loving it!

Sunday, December 12, 2010


I am adjusting some of my 30x30 goals:

18. Create a new game for the kiddos.

This was originally planned to entertain my boys while we are stuck inside most days. But really, Jack so easily entertains himself. Josh is my issue-child. So, instead, I am "creating" some time each day to do school work/projects with him. I mean, why the heck do I have an ENTIRE kindergarten classroom packed up in my garage if I'm not gonna use it? Josh is so incredibly ready, and is spelling out words on his own. He shocks me all the time with what he can do, literacy-wise.
(this is also aiding in my #19: Give each child 45 minutes of my time... & #21: using my K resources...)

6. No more caffeine.

Did anyone think I was really going to do this?!? Well, what I have done is kick the crazed obsession I had to going out each day just to have my beloved Dr. Pepper. Like a crack-addict, I would just "find myself" in a convenient store. Or, I need gas... again. You get it. So since typing up my goals, I will allow myself my wonderful beverage IF we are out. And where we live, that is hardly ever now.

So there you go.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Our 'WI'nter Wonderland

You see how I did that with the state - WI - in the title!? You loved it.

We decided, with the warmer 28 degree weather today, that we would go play in the snow. It was sun-shiny and wind-less. WIN!

EVERY DAY, Josh says, "Mom, can we play outside after naps when it warms up?" My response, "Josh, it will never be warm here!"
So the boys were elated for some snow time!
(I even enjoyed getting some fresh air)

Josh wanted to get a shot of me and Jack. Aren't we just so cute!?

We have been watching these tracks appear all over the edge of our yard, and even around our entire house. Jack is convinced it's from a deer. Josh KNOWS they are from the elves... they are actually a stray cat's. But it was fun to follow them!

The snow here is SO powdery, which is bad for snowballs/snowmen-making, but great for sleds!!

(Jack using his entire body to pull Josh maybe 1 inch!)

So how did we end our excursion?

With hot chocolate & marshmallows, and freshly made (still warm) bread with jam!!
Of course.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Caption Contest

So, tell me what this girlie of mine is doing. The best caption/narration WINS!!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Our little Turkey Day!

Happy Thanksgiving

After a crazy day of cooking my first turkey EVER, along with most of the extras, it was time to sit down with my little family and reflect on what I am always most thankful for: the most amazing husband ever, and the 3 crazy kids we created!!!

We taught the boys to toast, in true Van Housen/Bienkowski style...
(we missed our CA family)

Layla was smiley all day, which made us extra grateful for her sweet personality. We are so blessed to have a funny, beautiful, and loving little sister.

Josh had been excited for this holiday for weeks, ever since discussing it in his SLC preschool. His only expectations were turkey and pumpkin pie, so I had to at least do those homemade. He was not disappointed!
We are grateful for this oldest brother who is SO smart about so many things. We are truly astounded by the way his brain works things out, the vocabulary he surprises us with, and his mature negotiating skills.

Jack is special in so many ways. He has the best imagination and watching him create scenarios with his trains/cars his so much fun! He repeats everything we say, which is why his speech has improved a TON in the last few months. Now we just need to work on his volume... since he basically whispers and even Layla is louder when she babbles!!

And then there is Dan. He is my other half, and I can honestly say that there is an overwhelming void when he is not around. The 2 weeks without him were 14 days too long, and will never happen again. I love him more than I can ever express, and will support him in the goals he desires to achieve because I know he has us always in his heart.

I was also grateful to see that I FINALLY have a child who will eat whatever I cook. The boys are famous for eating like birds... Not Layla! She is excited about whatever is on the spoon in front of her face.

Josh was happy with his first experience with pumpkin pie, while Dan was showing him that it's really all about the freshly whipped cream!!

We were thinking about ALL of our family on this day. We missed the laughter, the jokes, the movie quotes, and just the togetherness. (oh, and others helping with the cooking!) But we do look forward to creating traditions with Josh, Jack, and Layla.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

30 by 30 #6

I have NOT had any caffeine for 4 1/2 days!

Yay, right?!

Well, oddly enough, now I am not sleeping well anymore... which makes me want some Dr. Pepper in a mean way. (and I had been sleeping amazingly well for the first time in a long time)

I blame the fact that there's no more end-of-the-day crash anymore, but WHAT THE HECK?

Any ideas?