Life certainly has been busy, as always!

I know my life has always been busy. And certainly Scouting is a big part of that craziness! AND January through March is insane because of Girl Scout Cookie Season! And then we are doing everything else in between the cookie madness!

As of February, birthday season is officially over until November! My two son’s birthdays are 5 days apart followed by mine a week later! Yeah, this is the time of year that I am sick of cake…

Aden turned 8 and Arik turned 6…. and well lets just say I am now in my mid-40s! Ack, how did that one happen!?

But before all the birthdays happened Alex had a Girl Scout event at the Discovery Museum. To clarify, Alex and I attended a Girl Scouts overnight event at the Discovery Museum.

It was a very fun event and so glad as a Co-leader I was able to be there for the Girls and have some fun time with my number one girl! Oh did I mention that I built a fort for Addy (Alex’s BFF), Alex and I to sleep in, LOL!

While Alex and her friends had a blast — I was so tired. I woke up with a stiff neck and headache from sleeping on the floor and I ended up being so tired when I got home that I ate lunch and took a 3-hour nap!!!

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Life took over.

So life can throw you a bowl of cherries and it can throw you lemons and sometimes you can get both!

Since the kids started school in August my life has been super crazy! And then a week after school started the family and I decided to go to Wild Island Water Park. We had never been before so it was a lot of fun to experience something new and exciting.

 

Back in September I even went as far as becoming a substitute teacher as well as a substitute teachers aide for my kid’s school district. It is part-time, but it keeps my pocket book a tad bit happier since I became a stay-at-home mom three years ago.

Unfortunately in the middle of all my craziness in September, my mother-in-law passed away unexpectedly. She was only 61 and extremely active so it was a shock to say the least. But life is a gift and you never know when you’ll be called back no matter how old you are.

The day after my mother-in-law passed away my husband, kids and I attended the Hot Air Balloon Races the next morning. We got up at 3am and drove to Reno to be at the Races opening at 4:30am. We were totally crazy, but had this planned for a long while and wanted to give the kids a bit of normalcy especially since their grandmother passed away the day before. While watching the Hot Air Balloons I saw a white owl fly over us… it made me think that my mother-in-law was with us in that brief moment.

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School Activities, PTO, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Volunteering and now work has been consuming my life to where I have been neglecting my blog, terribly and I so apologize.

October was fun for the kids since they LOVE Halloween. They decided it was a Star Wars dress up year, again! And awesomely so… I didn’t have to make a costume this year to my surprise!!

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Also, my husband decided to help carve pumpkins this year. This is Josh’s first EVER pumpkin that he has carved for Halloween. It only took him 41 years! My husband grew up  Jehovah’s Witness and never participated in Holidays like Halloween or Christmas until he met me almost 19 years ago. Surprisingly in 10 years of having children this was the first time my husband has ever  carved a pumpkin and I have to say it was pretty dang impressive!

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November was busy with Girl Scout and Cub Scout stuff of course, but my daughter had to start going through allergy testing and that was awful to watch her go through that.

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She ended up being VERY allergic to Horses. My poor mother-in-law is probably rolling over in her grave over that one since her life revolved around her 3 horses. Anyhow, Alex came up sensitive to cats as well (oh yay, we have 2) and is allergic to trees, grass, sagebrush and a bunch of different fishes. My poor girl now has to take allergy medicine to get her through the day.

A week later my daughter,Alex, turned double digits, the big 10! I threw her a birthday party on the Friday before her birthday since it was Veteran’s Day and there wasn’t school that day. I can’t believe my baby us 10!!

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My parents decided that because turning 10 is a HUGE milestone, that they were taking the family and I to Disneyland on Alex’s birthday!! It was crazy fun! My husband had to rent a scooter to get around the parks because he needs back surgery again and his back was killing him the whole time there. But the scooter was a God send and he was able to enjoy himself while in the Happiest Place on Earth, regardless.

We took my daughter to Goofy’s Kitchen for her birthday dinner and I was able to order her a Gluten Free Birthday Cake to keep the celebration going.

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We had a ton of fun at Disneyland, but this will probably be our last trip there for a couple of years, unfortunately.

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And then of course you have Thanksgiving at the end of our extremely already busy November. Over the last year I had saved over 2 loaves of gluten free bread heals and stuck them in the freezer! When it came time, I cubed them up and toasted them in the oven with some olive oil so I could make my  late Grandma Josie’s turkey stuffing gluten free that Turkey Day. And yes the stuffing came out very tasty!

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A couple of days after Thanksgiving we were graced with our first snow of the season.

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But of course in a couple of days the snow melted and we haven’t seen any snow since, sadly.

Then December finally sneaked up on us and we are still riding the crazy train, LOL. My parents came up so we can celebrate my Father’s birthday come Monday. But needless to say tonight I walked our town’s Parade of Lights with my Daughter’s Girl Scout Troop. I trekked 1.9 miles and was glad I had on a good pair of tennis shoes. My older son also participated in the parade with his Cub Scouts tonight as well. This was my 3rd year participating in the Parade of Lights – I love it and hope I can participate for many years to come. I had to make my daughter a tutu and dress her up as a Reindeer for the parade. I hope I got it right!

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Aden’s Cub Scouts built a Pine Wood Derby Car as their float and he road with them for the Parade.

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My December will be consumed by Caroling, 3 Birthdays, Subbing, Winter School Concerts, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Christmas, Winter School Break, my 19th anniversary of when I first started dating my husband and New Years Eve.

Yeah… 186 days til summer break and counting, LOL!!

Our summer…

So I have been lacking in posting the last month or so, because I have been having fun traveling, spending time with my family, nursing a cat back to health and just living life!

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At the beginning of June our older cat Baxter caught a baby bunny and when he noticed that I saw him, he released the little baby. We tried to nurse her back to health but I was saddened that I couldn’t have done more for her. The kids instantly named her Cotton — but Cotton couldn’t keep hydrated, unfortunately. It was emotionally hard seeing such a small creature so helpless and in pain. We tried for 4 days administering formula, water, and pedilyte to keep her going, but either she was too young and tiny or just too hurt from the cat that she ended up taking her last breath. The kids and I dug a hole in our flower garden and buried her amongst the blooming flowers. My daughter even painted a rock as a head stone to go on top of the grave. In those 4-½ days that little bunny stole our hearts!

RIP Cotton, I hope your pain is gone & you are hopping around and feeling better tiny little bunny. I’ll see you again at the rainbow bridge!!


 

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Then…. I and I say this in a good way, God has a weird sense of humor. So our lil bunny died and a week later this big domestic bunny ends up in our yard!!

We assumed it was someones in the neighborhood and not wanting it to be harmed, the kids, a neighbor and I catch the rabbit in our backyard and place him in an empty rabbit cage that we have.

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The next day Alexandria, Arik and I went door to door looking for the owner of the rabbit. No one claimed they were missing a rabbit. I then was talking to Dave my next door neighbor and he stated that the people who moved in around 6-weeks ago next to him found 2 domesticated rabbits in their garage and basically released the rabbits out in the yard. If this was one of those rabbits, this angers me that this rabbit was abandoned twice!! AND none of this was told to me when I asked said neighbor if they were missing a rabbit. Nevertheless, we ended up keeping this rabbit. And he has been an awesome addition to our family. Tame, beautiful and the kids have fallen in love with him.

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Finally planted the garden

I am tired and dirty, but my garden is finally in. I have some bare spots, but hoping the cantaloupe, pumpkins and watermelon will fill in the gaps.

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I planted seeds back at the beginning of April and kept them happy in the greenhouse. The seedlings were getting way too large for their containers and decided this weekend was a good day to finally plant them in the ground.

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I have been neglecting my blog…

Here are several reasons….

  1. In January I was diagnosed Vitamin D deficient. All I wanted to do was sleep 24/7.
  2. My youngest Son started Little League on top of my older Son being in Cub Scouts and my Daughter being in Girl Scouts – I AM OVERWHELMINGLY BUSY!!
  3. My Vitamin D deficiency makes me feel like a walking zombie. I unfortunately haven’t wanted to cook, bake or do much. And when I do, I HAVE to force myself.

So in essence I haven’t had the energy to do much and that included keeping up on my Blog.

Does that mean I am going to stop posting? Of course not! I will post when and as often as I can.

I just wanted to let you all know why my Blog slowed down, and I apologize.

Rainbow Classroom Party

I am the “Party Mom” for my daughter’s classroom. I basically come up with Party ideas and then implement them… well today we are having a Rainbow Party!! I hope it goes well… I even made Fruit and Veggie trays this morning from a generous donation. I think I will need to have the classroom write a thank you note!!

Anyhow, here is my attempt at putting together a colorful tray or two!

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On the trays are a variety of fruits like Watermelon, Grapes, Strawberries, Honeydew, Cantaloupe, Pineapple, Bananas, Mangoes and then a nice selection of veggies like Carrots, Celery, Green Bell Peppers, Broccoli, Cherry Tomatoes,  Olives.

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Hope it is colorful like the rainbow and the kids enjoy the treat!!!

Homemade Gluten Free Flour Blend

I find that buying pre-made all purpose gluten free flour is very expensive at the store per pound so I basically make my own.

Also, living at an altitude of 4,750 elevation requires a little more protein in my mix to help with that sponginess you would get from all Wheat Flours.

When I make my flour blend I love using Teff Flour as one of my blends. It is high in protein — which most GF Flours lack.

I also prefer using Bob’s Red Mill brand and tend to go with that brand when making my blend.

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So, so busy!

So on Monday my husband and I packed the car, then the kids and ourselves into the Prius and drove 400+ miles to Anaheim to visit Disneyland. We normally would stay for 3 days at the parks, but decided to save money and bought two-day park hopper tickets this time instead. Uh, having two days seemed very rushed. And even though we didn’t make it onto every ride we had planned, the kids still had an awesome time!

Once we arrived into town we went to Walmart and bought lunch supplies and dinner supplies for one night. Even though the food is quite tasty at Disneyland, and being gluten intolerant isn’t even an issue — the only food we purchased inside the park was a Dole Whip cause you can’t go to Disneyland without having a Dole Whip!

 

Dole Whip

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We are going to Disneyland!

While this isn’t our first time at Disneyland nor is it our first time there eating Gluten Free, I am quite excited to go and be there and see what they have going on for the 60th Anniversary!

My Husband, Kids and I have saved up our birthday and Christmas money to make this trip happen. And for the last 3 trips (over the last 6 years), my parents have joined us at the Happiest Place on Earth!

SO, it is official… WE ARE GOING TO DISNEYLAND in 30 days! Total countdown mode now!!!!!

My son Aden is very excited cause we’ll be in the Happiest Place on Earth for his birthday… Yeah lucky kiddo! 🤗💓

I am thinking I will have to celebrate my son Arik’s birthday as well since his Birthday is only 5 days prior to Aden’s and well we are leaving for our trip 3 days after his birthday. SOOOO, I will have to see what I can do to make it special for Arik as well.

We didn’t plan ever to go on one of our kids birthdays… it just happens to fall on the week Disneyland is deemed to have the least crowds of the year. So we picked that week to avoid waiting in massive lines.

Now mind you the last time we went to Disneyland, we went on Christmas 2013 – THE BUSIEST DAY OF THE YEAR. And will NEVER do that again. Nevertheless, we used Touring Plans (touringplans.com) and the app mapped out our best wait times and stragedies for which rides at what times for us including meal breaks and fastpasses. So the most we waited in lines on the Busiest day was 20 minutes.

Even though we are heading there on a least busy day, I am still gonna use Touring Plans App again cause it was a snap to use and I rather get through the park with ease, especially with three kiddos!

I love everything Disney and wish I could live at the Happiest Place on Earth. I mean I wouldn’t starve there especially since they are up on their Gluten Free awareness and you can go to City Hall and get a listing of where to eat Gluten Free. AND we already have a Character dining reservation at PCH Grill for the night of my son’s birthday and they are making (for an additional fee) a gluten free birthday cake to bring him out after dinner. I can’t wait to see how they present his cake!!! I am just beside myself!

Anyhow, T-minus 30 days.

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Santa came to my house early!

Today I hosted a Girl Scout Christmas Party at my house and Santa was invited as well.

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My kids simply had a wonderful time. I feel blessed to have great friends like Kate to thank for it — so Kate, thank you for co-hosting today’s Girl Scout Christmas Party at my house with me and then having a roller skating adventure at the Community Center with us and other families from the Troop!

As I tucked my children in bed, I asked them what the best part of today was and they replied….

My oldest son Aden said, “Roller Skating, Santa and Pizza (Cause Mama I really LOVE Pizza)!!!”

My youngest child Arik said, “Roller Skating and Santa.”

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And finally my oldest Alexandria said, “Roller Skating, Santa and making the Owls.”

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So I can safely say it was a really great day and evening for all of us!!