Monday, November 30, 2009

I've been meaning to write this post for months.

Once a month cooking. Or OAMC for those of us too cool to write out the actual words. Jenny and I recently teamed up for our fourth OAMC day. It's fun, it's exhausting, it's gross (lots of raw meat!), and it's so worth it. Here's what we made:

Mini meatloaves
chicken bundles
mexican casserole
potato soup

After she left I made a double batch of chocolate chip cookie dough and a triple batch of waffles.
We make enough of each entree to feed our families twice. The meatballs were an exception, we made enough for three meals. Of course, these are not the only options for dinner. We will still be having our usual homemade pizza, fajitas, etc. But, this does knock out a lot of the cooking for the next few weeks. Interested in doing your own oamc? Here's a few things we've learned:

1. Don't try to freeze anything with egg noodles. They turn to mush.

2. If you freeze a dish with potatoes or pasta in it, undercook them a bit so they can finish cooking when you reheat.

3. You will get grumpy and tired and wonder why you ever thought it was a good idea. It is worth it, I promise. It took us about three hours to accomplish everything in the picture.

4. If you make a dish with sour cream, add it after you defrost. Sour cream turns watery after it's frozen.

5. Have a partner. It really does save time, we divide and tackle.

6. Line your pans with foil and then lift the dishes out when frozen solid. Wrap up tight and stick back in the freezer. This takes up less space and keeps your 9 by 13 pans in commission.

Need recipes? Here are some good places to look:
oamc at recipezaar
once a month mom

Linda's bbq meatballs freeze wonderfully, just leave the sauce off until you bake.

Have any of you done oamc before? What were some of your favorite recipes?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I might be back...

Skyler told me to start blogging again so here I am. I thought long and hard about what my first post since May should be about. The term blog means a web log. Like a diary for all the world to see. So, here's my diary of today's activities.

5:30am- I am awakened by a text from my friend Julie saying that she delievered a healthy (and hefty) baby girl at 5:15. Welcome to the world Ms. Molly!
5:31- I go back to sleep.
7:30- I am once again awakened. This time by a 3 year old who needs to potty RIGHT NOW! I get him settled with some PBS and go back to sleep, again.
8:00- The girls file downstairs and join their brother on the couch with the exception of Daisy who comes into snuggle.
8:15- Daisy convinces me it's breakfast time so I make oatmeal and we all eat.
9:00- Maggie's friend Elise comes over and the girls start school. I get them started then hop in the shower. I get dressed in jeans, after having worn my black yoga pants for 48 hours. No kidding.

The rest of the day was school, laundry, cleaning, reading, etc. but I'm sure you all are getting tired of hearing the mundane details so I'll cut to the good part.

3:30- I am in line at the post office. It's a long line and there are about 20 of us. An early 20ish man walks in talking way too loudly on his cell. The rest of us are quiet so we can clearly hear everything he's saying. His girlfriend has herpes (she's currently having an outbreak) and he's mad at his extended family for gossiping about how he should get a job. Awesome.
3:45- I walk over Hancock to buy felt. I overhear a mother yelling at her young child in the next aisle. Here's the conversation:

mother: "I said get back here, now! Put that up!"

little girl: "NO!"

mother: "That's it, I'm calling the cops! I mean it. Where's my phone? Get me my phone! I'm dialing, 9....1......1!"

The daughter called her mom's bluff and still refused to put up the item. Apparently mom has used that line before.

And that's that.

Monday, May 18, 2009


Kendra was right, I didn't realize how much I'd love it. We had such a wonderful week. Big thanks to my mom and Mandy for keeping Daisy for us!

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

You know you haven't blogged in awhile when... realize you've forgotten your blogger password!

Greg has declared the blogs are dead, and while I do realize they've slowed down, I don't think we should be calling in the hearse yet. I've had plenty of blog ideas swimming around in my head, I just can't seem to find the time to put finger to keyboard. While I've yet to post Daisy's first birthday party and I've had the "10 ways to know you were adopted by rednecks" written for weeks, this subject seems a tad more urgent.

As many of you know, my husband left town for a few days (8!). He went to Guatemala to help install a security system in an orphanage. We knew we'd miss him and that taking the trash out every day wouldn't be any fun but we hadn't planned on "someone" feeling orphaned here in the states. What started out as aggressive and naughty behavior early in the week turned into full blown rage by Friday. Our little guy was having a rough time and he wanted to make sure we all were, too. While it was difficult and heart breaking to see Oliver hurting like that, I'm so very thankful for everyone who helped. I hope I don't leave anyone out....

Thank you to....
Chad and Skyler- For lightning my load so much around here. I really appreciate you two taking care of dinner, dishes, Daisy, and well...the list could go on and on.
Ashley- For writing me a note of encouragement and praying for us. Your friendship is a gift that only God could give.
Missy- For being ok with your baby leaving with less hair in his scalp than when he arrived. You handled the situation with such grace. I treasure the words you wrote concerning it all.
Valerie-For allowing me to flood your inbox with questions and taking the time to answer. Your wisdom is amazing and I'm so very, very thankful for your friendship.
Crystal and Tiff- Thanks for cooking us (all of us!) dinner. So tasty! You two are so fun and such honest sounding boards.
Holly- First of all, the dinner you brought over was amazing. Second of all....WOW! Just when I was about at the end of my robe, you swoop in with your babysitting husband and take Oliver and I out to a Korean lunch. Something about sitting in an establishment, surronded by Koreans, smelling the smells, and tasting the just brought it all back home. You knew that was just what he and I needed.
Grandmas- For babysitting and helping out like you guys are always so good to do.

I just had to publicly thank everyone.

Before Matt was even out of the gate at the airport, Ollie launched into a full sprint, jumped over the furniture that stood in his way, and threw himself onto his daddy. He's been back to his sweet self ever since.


Saturday, March 14, 2009

Let me be completely honest here, I am not a baby person. Shocking, I know. Seeing as how I've had 4 babies in 5 years. Now, don't get me wrong, I love children. I just tend to enjoy them more when they communicate in ways beyond finger pointing and screaming. I can vividly remember when Maggie was a baby and I saw Shannon and a school aged Katelyn at Hobby Lobby. It made me so excited for the day when I could walk up and down the aisles of craft supplies with Maggie, both of us equally interested in all the pretty things. You know what just dawned on me? That day is here! I've had several epiphany moments with my new 6 year old lately. Like when I had a migraine (only my third one ever!) and she made lunch for everyone, including me. Or the other day when we had so much fun baking together for hours and she turned to me and said, "I bet this is taking you a lot less time than normal because I'm such a good helper now. " The funny thing was, she was right! She was actually helping! Not "helping" but really and truly helping! She can change diapers, and pick out weather appropriate attire, and write me notes like the one I received today that tell me I'm her best friend. I just love this new stage we are entering. I really believe it only gets better from here. I cherished Teri's blog about how they were enjoying Lauren's teenage years. I just adore watching the relationship between Skyler and Cindy. Oh, I can't hardly wait!!!!!

*I need to be sure and clarify that I very well realize that I am not her best friend yet, although I do hope that day will come, I am still very much her mother.

Friday, March 06, 2009

"generally" fun

I was very blessed to go to Pershing Elementary for 4th, 5th, and 6th grade. It was and still is a small school which is just great. We knew all the kids in all the grades and every teacher knew us. These were my best girlfriends from those years. Through the magic of Facebook (is that a dirty word around here?) we are all back in touch with each other. We met for coffee last night and giggled like the school girls we were for hours. We chatted about bikes, tight rolled jeans, trampolines, tether ball terminology, Nike windbreakers, big hair, teachers, 4 square, and crushes. It was so fun to be all together for the first time since 1992. We plan on making it an annual occasion.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

first family night

If you are fan of blog star Heather like I am, you know all about her fab family nights. I've been meaning to do one for awhile and we finally made it happen. The girls were all about wearing their bathing suits last week so we had a beach party. Someone woke up from his nap angry and did NOT feel like participating in the dress code.

The kids dined on octopus atop the sea. It goes against all I hold dear in regard to nutrition and feeding my children well to give them hot dogs and ramen for dinner. But to keep with a theme, I will bend the rules.

We introduced the kids to The Beach Boys which was fun since they will be at the fair this year. I can't wait to do a family night again. Thanks Heather for the inspiration!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Valentine's day

My parents kept the kids while Matt and I went to Maria's on Friday night. They had their own little party with a heart shaped pizza and this delicious strawberry cake.

Old Navy had a deal where if you took in a valentine your kids had colored, they got a $5 off coupon. Well, you know I wasn't gonna pass that up.

I let each child pick out an item to spend their $5 on. The girls all picked out balls and flip flops, Oliver wanted a dog bone. We don't have a dog.

Free Andy's!!!!

Our group shot before heading to Ocean Zen.

The boys had flowers delivered to our table at the restaurant.

Mark thought that this was the only celebration of his 40th birthday that would take place that night.

While we were at dinner, the Wilson and Hillenburg kids were doing more than babysitting at our house. They were busy decorating for Mark's surprise party.

We set a new record for the number of people in our house at one time. It was so fun! I can't believe we pulled off a true surprise. Good work Cindy!

Like all good parties, the night ended with dancing in the basement.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009


We all have a blast
when you drive
the boat really fast.
You have a thing
for snakes
and you used to look like Blake.

We love you Uncle Randy!!!!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

the neighborhood hero

While the three littlest ones were napping today, us three oldest ones were jumping on the trampoline. We had been enjoying ourselves for awhile when Maggie stops and tells us, "Hey, I think I see smoke over there!" Matt got off and went to our fence to investigate. Sure enough, there was a fire a blazing three houses down.

Matt called the fire department while using a garden hose to try and keep it from spreading.

Here is Maggie calling her grandma, nana, and Mandy to tell them that she saved the day!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


One of my new year's resolutions was to blog more. Not because I think you all care what I have to say, I'm not that disillusioned. I would like to eventually make a hard copy of this blog for each of my children. I may stink at scrapbooks but I can blog! So, yesterday I thought I'd do a "day in our life" post. You know, to document what we do around here. Everyone was dressed and done with chores before 9. We had school done by noon. My mom stopped by, Sky ate lunch here, it was shaping up to be a great day at the Burch house. It all started falling apart when the Parents as Teachers lady stayed too long. Daisy's nap was way too short. The 2 year old, who always takes wonderful 3 hour long naps, refused to nap at all. The final straw came when I found a soiled Oliver diaperless in my closet. When I heard myself repeatedly asking him "Where did you put your poop*?", I knew that I was just not ready to share what really goes on around here. So, back to my trusty picture collage we have Lucy turning 4.

*down the laundry shoot

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

So there seems to be a lot of confusion about this new law. I am now hearing that garage sales and consignment sales (like moms of twins sales) will be allowed. Other than that, I haven't heard much reliable information. I know of 3 people who have called Children's Orchard in the last few days. All 3 of them received different information. Scroll down on this blog to read the latest. Or google the consumer protection act.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

A call to action

So Jen did some crackerjack investigating and discovered that we are not completely helpless in this situation. Call Roy Blunt's office at 889-1800 and let them know that the Consumer Products and Safety Act is going too far. I called and they said that there are some stipulations on it that could make it far less blanketing than the press has led us to believe. I hope this is true but I still think it is important that we call and let our voice be heard.

Monday, January 05, 2009


I had just returned with an adorable vintage dress from the D.A.V. yesterday when I read this. I'm sure I'm the last one to hear, like usual. It honestly brought tears to my eyes. The Consumer Products and Safety Act goes into effect Feb. 10th. To save our children from lead and such they are barring any reselling of childrens' items. While it is a noble cause, the law takes it WAY too far. Think about what this means. Resale shops, such as Children's Orchard will be forced out of business. No more buying cute baby clothes on Etsy. No more donating used clothing and toys to the thrift store because they would just have to throw it away. No more reselling on Ebay or in garage sales. How will this affect our family? No more justifying the cost of Gymboree clothes by knowing I can recoup some of it on Ebay after the girls have worn it. No more cleaning out the toy closets before Christmas and selling the items to Children's Orchard. No more scouring thrift stores for vintage dresses and books. Now what to do with all of my childrens' out grown clothing? I give a lot of it away to friends but what about the not so nice stuff I normally just donate? Well it looks like the only option will now be throwing it away. But, when all is said and done, we'll be ok. I'm not so sure about the moms who depend on half price day at the thrift store to cloth their families. There are a lot of moms out there who can't afford retail, even on sale. What will they do now?