What The Quail?!

Happy Friday Eve!  I honestly can’t believe we’re half way through April already.  I’m ready for summer break and so is my school girl.  She loves school, but I think she’s ready for no homework, late nights and fun with family and friends!  I’m ready to have all 3 of my little ones back in the nest during the week.  Ask me a week into break how I feel ;-) .IMG_0013 (1280x853)

Speaking of nests, I spy quail eggs underneath our grill. They usually do this every Spring and I LOVE that I get to show the kids this part of nature.  Unfortunately, this year, the mother quail decided that this is the spot to leave her un-hatching eggs.  Is that what you call them?  I don’t know, but anyway, nothing is happening with these.

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Ok, so last Friday, the hubby was going to take our middle kiddo out for a bike ride and ran inside to tell me there was a mama quail and her babies out and about in our yard. Eeeeek!  I ran to get my camera in attempt to get some good pics.  There is the mama and all her babies (10 or 11, I think) under her wings.

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There they are following the mama and ready to flee from me.  They blend in so well with the sand/rocks, don’t they?

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Look at the little peeps.  Cuuuuuuute!

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Over the river…

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And through the woods…

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To the neighbor’s house we go.

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So, fast forward to tonight, when another neighbor found two baby quail in their garage. They were separated from their clan and unsure of what to do.  They brought them to our backyard because we have no outdoor pets and thought they’d be safer here.  I knew I’d skip right from 3 kids to 5.  I always thought if we tried for a 4th, it’d be twins.  I was right.  Surprise.

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If this doesn’t scream cuteness, I don’t know what does.

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What’s up my peeps?

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We were going to put them in our shed with food and water for the night, but they’re just so tiny (1-2 weeks old, maybe?) and we didn’t know if they’d make it through the night.  So, we set up a giant cardboard house with a little heating pad, blanket, crushed food and some water for them in our garage.  I really, really hope they make it through the night.  If they don’t, I might have to take bereavement leave.  I’m kind of attached.  I hope the family of quail are back in our yard tomorrow morning, so we can release these two to them.  Fingers crossed!

My Girl Turns 7!

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Last Saturday, we celebrated my little girl’s 7th birthday with lots of great friends.  It’s always such a treat to celebrate the birth of a child and to celebrate with friends is like icing on the cake.

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Speaking of cake, my girl doesn’t like the tradition cake/cupcakes.  She does LOVE frosting though.

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I would say her favorite dessert/treat would have to be rice krispy bars, so I decided to make just that.  This Rice Krispy Cake was so easy to make.  I made three batches (one at a time) of rice krispy bars and instead of pressing them into a pan, I used various sized cake pans.  Be sure to spray them with plenty of cooking spray or you might have issues getting the “bars” out.  I then iced the top of each layer and stacked them and decorated with sprinkles.

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I also made this little banner to top it off.  Pure lovely and simple.

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We served lots of yummy snacks that held a mermaid theme.

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Nothing screams party like a good pinata!

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Everyone got a hit at the pinata and they were all so good about everyone getting candy.  So cute to have the big kids watch out for the littler ones.  We are truly blessed.

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This was just too cute not to share :-) .

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I mean, she kind of looks like 7 going on 17.  I am SO thankful that I get to watch her grow each and every day.  Love this girl.

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This little guy was so sad that he didn’t get to blow out that birthday candle.

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I don’t like to brag, but we make dreams come true at the Eng house.  Your wish is our command, Noah ;-) .

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We did this three times at the party and then again in the evening.  Whatever floats your boat, Noah.

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Let me just pick this up here.

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Yup, I think I want a bite.

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Almost there.

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That’s the stuff.

Another birthday in the books.  It’s always so stressful to plan and setup for a party, but yet so worth it.  We always have a great time and wonderful memories!

Our Adventures in Apple Puking…I mean Picking

Happy Wednesday!  Hope you week is going well!  I thought I’d share some pics of our recent trip to Sedona, AZ.  First of all, let me begin by saying we started off with a bang because we forgot a blanket to have our picnic on and I forgot to bring my swanky camera to take amazing pics.  I’m normally a list maker, but somehow I thought it wouldn’t be necessary for this day trip.  Lesson learned.  So, please enjoy the stellar pics taken through the van window.  You’re welcome.IMG_1100

My middle child has been BEGGING to go apple picking for what seems like forever.  I’m pretty sure he got the idea from that wonderful Caillou boy he sees on TV.  No matter how much I can’t stand the show, there are some pretty good adventures in there and my kids seem to want to do them all.  Next we’ll try playing ringette.  Anyone remember that episode?

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There are some very winding roads on the way up to Sedona, which I never had a problem with until I had children.  Now I do all I can to keep my breakfast down.  Bleh.

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The hubby doesn’t understand it.  He thinks I’m nuts and making it all up.  Yes, that’s it.  I just love car rides so much that I want you to drive slower because I enjoy it.  NO.  Going slower helps me from hurling all over your lap sweet cheeks.

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The red rocks are lovely, aren’t they?

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I was in such awe of the beautiful trees over the road.  So peaceful.

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YEY!  Almost to Slide Rock State Park to pick our apples!  In fact, just after this sign, cars were backed up to get into the Park, so we were nearing a slow down.  All of a sudden I hear a noise behind me.  I turned around and see my third born tossing cookies.  No, he wasn’t playing cookie monster and throwing them in his mouth.  I’m talking all out vomitus maximus.  He was literally tossing his cookies because that’s what he had eaten just minutes before. If you know me at all, I can’t handle vomit.  Give me all of the poo in the world, but you can have the vomit.

I’m pretty sure this is the worst case scenario too because we were in a van…without a change of clothes…no towels/blankets…NOTHING.  I’m pretty sure I used about fifty baby wipes to “clean” it up, which left me with about twenty.  I might have said a prayer in hopes that no one would crap their pants or upchuck the rest of this trip.

Are you picturing this yet?  It’s not like he hurled out the window or anything.  No.  It’s in his car seat, which has straps and belts and crevasses up the wazoo.   And man alive, we all know what “it” smells like, don’t we?  We’ve washed the car seat and everything several times and I just feel like the smell is still there.  Maybe it’s just burned in my nose?  I don’t know.  I also have the song “That Smell” by Lynyrd Skynyrd stuck in my head.  That can stay, but the smell must go.

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They’re all just so cute (even though the littlest smells like stomach rot…poor baby :-( ). Once we got to the park, I did my best to “wash” his clothes with the soap they had in the bathroom, which thankfully I did right away because later in the day the soap was gone.

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I was still intoxicated by the fumes and wasn’t sure where I was or what I was doing.  Actually, I was secretly hoping that the youngest child would fall into some animal dung to help cover up the other smell.  Y’all poke fun, but trust me…you weren’t there.

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See…I still love ya little man!  (PS – Holding my breath.)

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I’ve already made an apple crisp and a pie is next on the list.  I’m dying to try a caramel apple pie.  Has anyone had it before?  Good?  If so, please share a recipe!

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The fields were COVERED in cockaburs.  Let’s just say that in addition to the blanket, camera, and change of clothes, and kitchen sink, we should’ve worn socks and shoes. Looks like daddy remembered.  Hmph.

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LOVE these guys!!  Insert hashtag blessed.

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I was quality control.  What he put in, I took out.  Sorry buddy, we don’t need ones with worms.

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He loved picking up the apples from the ground and tossing them like a bowling ball down the hill.

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The views at Slide Rock were absolutely stunning.

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We will definitely plan on going in the summer next time because the water was freezing (52 degrees).  Although, the locals said it’s really not much warmer in the summer.  I’m sure they tell all of us visitors that just to keep it for themselves.  We’ll be back.

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My two little rock climbers!

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The machine on the right is an old apple sorter (replica) from long ago.

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We got free ice cream cones because they felt bad for us and all of the vomit.  Just kidding.

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I would have to say our trip was a success because we came for apples and we left with apples.  Other than that, you couldn’t pay me enough to repeat the drive up here.  Let’s just say that for all of our future endeavors, I will be going overboard and packing everything but the kitchen sink.  Just you watch.

Yours truly,

Vomit Van Survivor

P.S. – It used to be called the ‘Milk and Piss’ Van because I would always end up nursing the littlest in there and my middle would never pee in public restrooms, so we tote around a little porta potty.  We’re past both of those stages in life now, so it only seems appropriate that a new name come along.  Besides, we did hit 100,000 miles on her a couple of weeks ago.  I just wish it could’ve been something other than vomit.  Livin’ the dream folks and making memories along the way!