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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Remember GI Joe?

Well, Ron dug his old box of GI Joe toys tonight. The four "men" in my family sat on the living room floor for over an hour...dressing, karate chopping (complete with loud sound effects "Hi YAH!") and having GI Joe drive a motorcycle and ride a horse. I spent the time just LAUGHING at those fellas! I'm not sure who had more fun, Ron, Caleb, Cameron or Ethan!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Pinewood Derby excitement!

Ok..the Cub Scout Pack 83 Pinewood Derby is always a STRESSFUL event for our family. Neither Ron nor myself are woodworkers..we don't have the skills or tools to make things out of wood! But it is always SO exciting for Ethan (as it was for Caleb and Cameron a few years back!) Thankfully we have resources in the members of our congregation! Dave Jacobson very kindly agreed (on quite SHORT notice this year!) to help with the shaping of Ethan's car. (When I say short notice, I mean that we called him on Thursday, asked if he could help us on Friday, 'cause the race was TODAY!) Well, Dave did an outstanding job with helping Ethan with his car! It looked pretty cool when we left his house yesterday. Ethan came home and he painted his car white, and then sprayed a bit of silver on it for added "coolness".

A BIT of stress when we got there 10 minutes before race time for a weigh in, to discover that the car weighed 5.38 oz. It can only weigh a frantic run home to drill out some of the graphite. Weighed it again and it was 4.25 ounces. More drilling. Then it was 5 and 1/8 ounces. A BIT more drilling and it was 5 ounces on the nose. Whew!

There were 3 cars in the Wolf pack race this afternoon. They raced on one track (3 lanes) so that each car raced each other car, always in a different lane. So I think they raced 4 or 5 times in that round. They raced a second round a little later. During the first round, Ethan's car came in second every time, behind his friend Curtis. A couple of the times it was a photo finish...they were neck and neck! The second round, Ethan beat Curtis' car every time! So they were tied, and had to do a "race off". Ethan came in second on that one by just a bit. He gave his friend a high five and congratulates, and happily came home with a 2nd place trophy! (A COOL trophy!)

It was fun for Ethan to have Caleb and Cameron be the race judges for the event! And we have to admit that they didn't cheat! Ethan got second place fair and square :-)

A BIG thanks to Dave for helping make the car, and for coming to cheer Ethan on at the race today!

Week one down!

and just 4-5 more to go on this maternity leave I'm covering :-) The classroom that is my "headquarters" is on the upper level on the far west side of the Middle school, and one of the classroom teachers that I assist 2 times a day is on the lower level on the far EAST side of the building. I walk miles and miles doing this job! The good news is that after just a week of doing this, I am no longer huffing and puffing when I get to the top of the stairs!

We are also a little amazed that tomorrow is already the FIFTH Sunday in Lent! While Lent is an incredibly busy time of year for any parsonage family, this year seems more crazy than ever, BUT that has made the time fly! I feel as if I've barely had time to meditate on the passion of Christ this year. I'm praying for some time to just ... think, pray, meditate and rest in God's word this week!

Some of us are looking forward to a Palm Sunday weekend trip to Ohio for Nathan's confirmation (some have to stay behind because of JOBS and silly it is to have to have a JOB!) Caleb and I will miss being a part of the family gathering!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Whew what a week!

I have new respect for the term "TGIF!" I was (well..the whole FAMILY was) on the go all week long! Monday was a no-school day, so we spent the day getting the house together again...doing laundry...just basically getting caught up.

Tuesday was circuit pastor's conference at Klinger. Had a great day of visiting with the pastor's wives in our circuit. What a houseful of kids we had there! It was lots of fun trying to have a conversation in-between all the interruptions from the young ones. It was also fun watching them all play together. That evening we had the 6th grade variety show. Rachel sang in the choir. There are some talented 6th graders at SF-MS!

Wednesday I was THREE people throughout the day! I subbed for Mrs. K while she went for her dr. visit to see if they could get things started with the delivery of this baby. She came back at 10, and then I was Mr. Balk for a couple of hours. I finished the day for Mr. Bernard. Whew...split personality day!

Midweek and worship Wed. evening, with my midweek kids serving the "lunch" after services. They did great...I was proud of their baking and host/hostessing skills!

Mrs. K had her little boy Wed. night at 9:30, so I subbed for her on Thursday (came home with a SICK headache from a combination of being super hot all day, stress of not knowing when to be where, and a couple nights of not sleeping well!) Went to the High School vocal/show choir concert for a tremendous show. I love music! Caleb played valve trombone for the combo for show choir, and they sounded great!

Today I still had a lingering headache but it wasn't horrible like yesterday. It was the end of the "Pennies for Patients" campaign at the middle and elementary schools. (one of the jobs of subbing for Mrs. K was wrapping up this fund-raising activity) The kids did awesome! The middle school raised $1,000! Wow! Elementary raised between 400-500!

Finally, tonight was the Band Parent's carnival at the High School. It was fun, but we're all TIRED!

Hopefully soon, I'll get into the "routine" of working full time, and won't be coming home with headaches every single day! I'm looking forward to the weekend! least Saturday...Sunday will be another hectic day!

Chocolate Mousse Cake

My friend Hummie is hosting a Blog Party! She said to create a post that would be of interest to other party goers...and this recipe is IT...I got it from a friend but I can't remember which one! This is decadent and DELICIOUS!! (hint! Cut the pieces SMALL 'cause this is REALLY rich! mmmmmmmm.)

Chocolate Mousse Cake

If you don't have a springform pan, you may need to improvise but I'm sure you can figure something else out.

3 cups finely crushed chocolate graham crackers (Some stores carry the already crushed Nabisco Oreo cookies which I prefer)
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 eggs
4 egg yolks
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips (18 oz)
2 cups (1pint) heavy cream
1/3 cup confectioner's sugar
1. In a medium bowl, combine the crushed graham crackers and butter; mix well. Press into a 10-inch springform pan, covering the bottom and sides to form a crust. Chill until ready to use.
2. In a small bowl, beat the eggs and egg yolks; set aside. In a medium saucepan, melt 3 cups (18 oz) chocolate chips over low heat, stirring constantly. Add the egg mixture, quickly whisking until well blended. Remove from the heat; set aside to cool slightly.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, with an electric beater on medium speed, beat the heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add the confectioner's sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold the whipped cream mixture into the slightly cooled chocolate mixture until well blended. Spoon into the prepared crust; cover and chill for at least 6 hours or until firm.


Tuesday, March 6, 2007

I can SEE!

Well, Caleb has discovered that, with glasses, he can actually SEE the lines on his music when he's playing Tuba (or sax, or valve trombone). Til today, he didn't even KNOW he couldn't see them. Putting glasses on changed his world!

Isn't he handsome?

He had his "Parade of Bands" concert at the High school tonight, and did an awesome job on that tuba! (Actually, Cameron played trumpet in the 8th band and MS Jazz band, and Rachel played clarinet in the 6th grade band..they ALL did a tremendous job.) Ron, Ethan and I enjoyed watching and listening. Well...Ron and I enjoyed it...Ethan just tolerated it 'cause we made him attend. He thought it was fun when we handed him the camcorder for a while!

I'm so thankful that God has gifted my kids with musical talent! It gives me great enjoyment to listen!

Monday, March 5, 2007

I LOVE Theater!

Yesterday, Caleb and I, along with several other students in his Spanish Club, got to travel to the Gallagher Bluedorn in Cedar Falls for an awesome performance of Man of LaMancha. The performance was flawless, and the music was tremendous. What a beautiful rendition of "To Dream The Impossible Dream"! Gave me goosebumps!!! Caleb enjoyed it as well, and thanked me several times for going with him!After the performance, we went to Las Margaritas, where we enjoyed a delicious Mexican dinner. Caleb ordered Cancun platter, that included shrimp, crab and chicken, over a bed of Spanish rice, and covered with a cheese sauce. He loved it, and cleaned his plate! I enjoyed a huge fajita platter! Absolutely delicious! We both had yummy fried ice cream for dessert.

A wonderful day!

Saturday, March 3, 2007

Here Comes The Sun!

And what a sight for sore eyes it is! Today is the first day in well over a week that there is SUNSHINE here in NE Iowa! With all the fresh snow out there, it is blindingly bright, but such a wonderful sight.

Roads are still being cleared off, and for many roads, it is still inadvisable to drive, but we are slowly getting back to normal. YAY!

Friday, March 2, 2007

Yet another snow day

This has been an interesting week for school, that's for sure. School was canceled on Monday due to the weekend storm. Tuesday was a 2 hour late start. Wednesday school dismissed 2 hours early. Snow day on Thursday and another snow day today. The kids are enjoying it (except for the work of shoveling the driveway)

There are huge drifts in the yard, and this picture shows what greeted the boys as they went to walk out to shovel the drive way today.

The weather is causing some disappointment in the cancellation of events that were scheduled. The middle school band kids were to play for a Wartburg professor last night and be "judged" or "critiqued" by him. Tonight was to be Family Fun Night at our elementary school, but that has been postponed. And tomorrow, Cameron was to play in the Tri-State Honor band in Decorah, but that trip has been canceled, too. The event is still going on, BUT our school is not going. I was told that we can still take Cameron, as he's all registered and everything. We'll have to see what the roads are like, and what Cameron wants to do.'s still snowing a bit. The wind is blowing very hard, still. So, it isn't over yet!