Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Going on...

It seems that the more things I schedule the more that keep coming along. I've been running around town for two days straight and it seems like I don't have anything done yet.

Here's a run down of what we have going on for the next few weeks.

Tonight: Awana awards
Tomorrow: Lunch with church member, Painting at the house
Friday: Painting at the house
Saturday: Plans with friends and laying linoleum at the house
Sunday: Oh, you know the usual, Sunday School, Church, Lunch, clean, Youth Group, grocery shopping
Monday: Packing, Finish up at the house
Tuesday: Bible Study brunch, LEAVING FOR DALLAS
Wednesday-Sunday: DALLAS (I can't even explain how excited I am to go to Dallas and see everyone I've missed for a year!)
Monday: Carpet installed
Tuesday: Cleaning, finishing house, Packing, and moving
Thursday: Dr's appointment, Cleaning, finishing house, Packing, and moving
Friday: Cleaning, finishing house, Packing, and moving
Saturday: Actual moving day
Sunday: Oh, you know the usual, Sunday School, Church, Lunch, clean, Youth Group, grocery shopping
Monday-Thursday: Unpacking, arranging, rearranging, discovering treasures that have been lost at least a year
Friday: Frantically pulling everything together for a small dinner party
Saturday: Open house and Max's Birthday Party
Sunday: Oh, you know the usual, Sunday School, Church, Lunch, clean, Youth Group, grocery shopping

Yep, I'm tired already. :)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Our Outside Blanket

We've reached the point in the year where the weather is beautiful when it's not raining. It leaves the ground too wet to just play in the grass and Max seems to have a contact allergy to grass like his Mama. So I went in search of an Outside Blanket. Qualifications for this blanket were many and I thought I might have to try my hand at quilting just to get what I want, but I found the perfect blanket and it's been a recycled joy to me the past few days.

The quilt is the perfect size (twin) and the perfect weight (thick enough to keep us from getting soggy). It's beautiful (who doesn't love purple and white together and has a special meaning. The quilt was given to me as a high school graduation present. It was made by Peggy, she was my boss at the coffee shop where I worked, my mentor, my friend, and like a mom to me. It was on my bed throughout most of college and has since been packed away. I found it while organizing the other day and wondered what I would do with it. This is the perfect solution.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Musical Monday-MOVIE MUSIC

Musical Monday

I know I've been a slacker on this, but I had to join in on this one.... I love movies.

I really want to do a top three for this one because I can't just choose one. I decided on a smattering of different movies... all ones I love.

The first on is Disney's Cinderella

Second is The Goatherd Song from The Sound of Music

And third, from Josie and the Pussycats

Menu Plan Monday....

Last weeks plan was perfect for us. The Baked Ziti was wonderful and super easy. I put it in two casserole dishes instead of one and froze the second instead of baking it. I also took a commenter's suggestion and added a can of just tomato sauce as well so it was a little more "saucy."

Unfortunately my rotisserie chicken tasted "off" this time (Adam and I couldn't figure out what it was) so I had to throw it out and I just used a frozen chicken breast for the quesadillas on Saturday.

The recipe for Sunday's Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler came from my friend Heidi's Blog Beans and Weenies for the Easy Batter Fruit Cobbler. I normally keep it a secret as to what I bring to see if people will eat it, or like it because it's good or because I'm the pastor's wife. It got out this time about the cobbler and numerous people said they liked it and I really did too, in fact I liked it for breakfast this morning too.

Cereal Night ended up being a HUGE success. I knew it!

Here's what's up for this week!

Monday- Doctored Up Frozen Pizzas (I buy the $1 ones and have extras around to make them better)

Tuesday- Subs and veggie

Wednesday- Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup (Max LOVES tomato soup) and 2-3 dozen cookies for AWANA

Thursday- Baked Potatoes

Friday- Taco Soup

Saturday- Taco Pie (We don't mind having "Mexican" two nights in a row and these two things are actually quite different tasting.)

We have had and will continue to have super busy weeks until the end of May and so my menu plans are to keep it simple. I won't probably be trying anything too new or outrageous until June when we are settled in the new house.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Crafty Post

I've been designing a lot lately and making creative decisions but only some things are complete.

Here's a list of things I've been doing lately and some things in the works. In no particular order.

Easter Bunny Shirt- Freezer paper stencil

Jessie's Shawl- Finished finally

Baby Girl Blanket- Crocheted granny squares, I always think they'll go quicker than they do

Knitted summer scarf- uh still not done....

Appliqued Birthday Shirt- for Max's first birthday in a few weeks and also one for a birthday girl coming up soon

Some embroidery- it always looks so beautiful when it's done, I just don't always have the patience

Swatch portraits from "the purl bee"- I'll be using them as artwork for our guest bedroom

Curtains for the living room and the rest of the rooms- Adam's mom is making the ones for the living room after I picked out the fabric and everything. Now I just need to work on the 57,326 other curtains I need

We've moved postcards and "Help us move" postcards- designed and just need printing off

Max's birthday invite- printed and a stack waiting to go in the mail

House arrangement and finishing ideas for a speedy set up- I'll have diagrams waiting for moving day and boxes hopefully correctly labeled. Time to start measuring the furniture again

Friday Miracle!

Ok so it's no really a miracle, but it's been a rough week around here, and this brightened my day....

I posted a while ago about our camera just dying... like while I was taking a picture, kaput.
We had a two year warranty on it, so we thought, "Finally! Someone will cash in on this!" (The warranty was free, that's why we had it, we never buy warranties on things.)

We bought a new battery to make sure it wasn't just ours giving out. Gave it a few days and would try it every now and then. Nothing.

We started to investigate our warranty with Gateway who we bought our Canon camera through. We called the Gateway number for warranties and tried online as well, you can't get into their system without a Gateway computer id number.... which we don't have.

Finally Adam gets through and talks to someone (obviously not in the US) who repeatedly keeps asking for our Gateway computer number, even after repeated attempts to tell him it's not a computer and a camera. He replies that they don't sell Gateway cameras (duh! It's a Canon).

A couple of times through this ringer and Adam is mad (he hates doing this sort of thing anyway) and decides to write a letter to Gateway (now owned by someone else) figuring the other ways are pointless and this is the only other option at ever getting a response.

We do get a response in the form of a phone call, with a lead on how to address a warranty. He's so excited he gets right on it. Only to find out that they only cover the warranties under the new company and would have look in files for our warranty which they promise to do and will get back to us. They do return the call and cannot find our warranty, and no there's nothing we can do about it, they don't even cover cameras anyway.

Needless to say, this was very frustrating. We just chalked it all up to another technology and customer service disaster.

So in the mean time we're discussing a new camera, this is a big deal for us because I take about a bazillion pictures a month so we need something that is durable. We are also picky about quality and know just enough about photography from high school to get us in trouble. We toss around the idea of getting the updated version of our Canon SD and then start talking serious cameras and getting a digital SLR. I would love an SLR but it's not really practical to throw in my bag and just go with. So we kinda decide that we'll call it Mother's Day, Father's Day and my Birthday present in order to justify the price tag.

In the mean time Adam's brother gets a new camera for his wife and they decide to lovingly send us their old one (a point and shoot) because that one is even better than our old one I have been using (it has a 5-10 second delay between pictures, not really conducive to taking pictures of kids). We get that in the mail two days ago (THANKS RYAN AND LAURA!).

I finally get the chance this morning to play around with it. I go to get the SD card out of the drawer where we've been storing all the camera parts and paperwork for this fiasco, and decide to try the old camera one more time (it's the obsessive part of me that can't let go). I put in a battery and try the switch, and..... IT WORKS! OMG, apparently it just needed an extended vacation, it didn't work for weeks, and now all of a sudden it works. What's the deal with that?

So in honor of the camera working again, here's our morning so far.

We went fishing

We played in the cabinet

Max is still feeling poorly, he has a terrible cough and a runny nose, just a cold I think, but it's no fun when he's wimpy and whiny. He's been a trooper though and a good sleeper at night for the most part. Naps are the hardest for him.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thankful Thursday.... How long has it been?

I've been thankful quite often since the last time I've posted a Thankful Thursday, but things just seem to get out of hand here on Thursdays. It's normally the day I get things done. So I've noticed I don't often post on Thursdays at all. But today I'm taking a little rest during nap time, and was thinking about what I'm thankful for...

Today I'm thankful for the "right now"

Some bloggers I know do a "right now" segment where they tell you what's going on right now. Thought I would do that because sometimes I forget to be thankful for the "right now."

Right now I love....
Thow Max has been sleeping lately with his bum in the air

the tulips and lone daffodil I found blooming in my new backyard today

the bird's nest and eggs tucked in the wreath on our front porch

that my carpet is in and will be installed soon

that Max loves ice cream as much as his mommy does

iced pomegranate green tea

a full night's rest

these pictures from our trip to Ohio (Ok I love more than just these one's but I only have so much time to upload pictures)
playing in the sand box at Auntie's house
Kid, you have a Cheerio on your nose!

These faces! Super sweet cousin Ali and tough guy Max

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Menu Plan Monday.... yeah, it's Wednesday...

Yesterday was spent in a snot filled daze with Max fighting a cold. He had the feverish whine thing kids do while rubbing snot across his face. So we had Taco Bell for dinner last night as I didn't make it to the grocery store, and Adam had been alone for the week before = EMPTY fridge and expired milk.

Here's our plan for the rest of the week though:

Rotisserie Chicken and Mashed Red Potatoes (was never made two weeks ago....)


Breakfast! Eggs, Turkey Bacon, Cinnamon Raisin Toast


Baked Ziti and Breadsticks (from I LOVE their monthly meal plan, I normally get at least a weeks worth of meals a month from them.


Chicken Quesedillas (chicken from rotisserie chicken we are having tonight)


We have a potluck after church for visiting missionaries, so I will be making Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler (Adam's Mamaw grows rhubarb in her yard) and Corn Casserole.

Each week someone signs up to feed our youth group (which we have in our home at the moment). This week I signed up (uh, I mean filled in a blank spot) and we are having cereal for dinner and cookies. (The last time I signed up we had brownies for dinner.... see how good I am with teenagers?)

This week is interesting because normally I don't cook at all on Sundays... I mean I'm not really cooking, I'll make the stuff for the potluck on Saturday, and cereal has no cooking involved..... But still, I normally don't have anything to plan for Sundays.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Past Few Weeks....

It's been a strange past few weeks. Right now it's quiet and that makes me uncomfortable, because there's been a lot of noise lately and I've become accostomed to it. Always noise. Last night it was so quiet I couldn't sleep.

I've lots of adventures to talk about but I'm still on the road and lots of pictures to share, but more will be taken today. Max and I should get home tonight, it will be nice to have a routine that seems new because of the lack of one recently.

Promise will post Monday Menu Plan and jump back into Musical Monday. But probably won't post them until tomorrow.

I've also been a little crafty while on the road and for Easter, will post about that too.

And the house is continuing to be worked on and is actually coming to a close. There are a few things that need to be finished before the carpet is put in, which has been ordered, so many hours will be spent there in the next two weeks. I can't believe we'll be living there in a few weeks. Need to post an update on the things there.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Yesterday and Today

Yesterday was Easter and we had a wonderful day with Grandpa Kipp and Grammy. Max is getting the hang of "opening" things and loves playing with plastic eggs (and eating real ones). He apparently has a problem with the plastic grass, he doesn't like that it sticks to him.

Today Aunt Kara and Uncle Nick got here, bearing more gifts, even an early birthday present.

My Grandpa Fox passed away today, so Aunt Kara and Uncle Nick got here just in time to drive Max and I to Ohio. We'll be there tomorrow night through Monday, visiting family and friends.

Today Max also turned 11 months old. I really can't believe it. He'll take up to 7-8 steps at a time and is getting increasingly comfortable with walking and climbing. I think he's definitely going to be a climber. He's also a dare devil and will try anything. He's such a happy boy and only cries when he gets mad. I just can't believe in 4 weeks he'll be one year old.

And this is why I had kids, once again, to do embarrassing things to them and photograph it for later blackmail.
So cute, Peekaboo!

Easter Morning (excuse my hair, it was very windy here!)
"I think I'll have this one!"

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Last Week
We stayed inside because of this:
And so we found there are lostof fun things in the house to amuse us.
Like this that has a million drawers to pull out and push in (with a few fingers stuck too)

And some blanket surfing around and around

And sticking our tongues out and making funny faces

This Week
But we're glad for this week because today there was this:

The neighbor across the street gave Max a tractor she had for their granddaughter, he loves to sit on it, but even more likes to push it.

We spent the afternoon outside while waiting on AAA to come unlock Grammy's van where she'd locked her keys. We had the new house and our car, but it was such a great day to be outside.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I got an AWARD! (.... uh weeks ago)

Oops, I've been a little out of sorts lately, but I'm getting back in the swing folks, I promise. A couple of weeks ago, I got a little bloggy award. It was so nice of my old pal Brandi to think of me.

It's called the Smoking Typewriter, or the "Premios Dardo" Award. I was curious about this award because I'd seen it somewhere before, and so I kept going back and back in the links to find more information about it. (I really do have better things to do around here people, but I get obsessed about things and have to know the answer.) But search I did until I couldn't anymore and it turns out that it's for bloggers that "acknowledge the values that every blogger shows in his/her effort to transmit cultural, ethical, literary and personal values every day." Ha, maybe now you'll want to take it back Brandi, but you can't I've already claimed it. :) Somewhere along the line there are rules that get altered for claiming this one and I thought they were fun, so here we go.

1. Post the picture of the award and link back to who gave it to you.

2. Google your name and post what comes up. (I used to google myself all the time, and I haven't in a while, so this should be fun.

Apparently CARA stands for a lot of things. Acronyms all around. Here are the top 5 acronyms that spell my name according to Google anyway.

1. Chicago Area Runners Association
2. Community Animal Rescue and Adoption
3. Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate
4. Communities Against Rape and Abuse
5. California Advancement Researchers Association


So when I Google my full name, I get myself. I get my blog, I get a copy of the NEWSY (a shortlived newsletter Adam and I put out while in seminary to keep everyone posted pre-blog), I get my facebook, I get my flickr page, I get comments I've left on other people's blogs, I get my ranking of the 5k I ran a long time ago.


Sorry guys, I thought that was going to be much cooler....

But on to the last rule of the award...

3. Give others the award and let them know they've been given the award. Some of my favorite bloggers are private bloggers, so it's a little hard to do that, but here are some of my favorite "public" bloggers.
Laura - She's got my cutie pie niece, and she's got a photo blog too!
Michele from Extremely Crafty - She's one of my new favorite crafty bloggers
Megan from Hip Home - I've known Megan for years and admire her for her creativity, her parenting style, but most importantly her faith
Amber from Pizza and Ice Cream - She's a dear friend who lives far away and has the cutest newborn around :)

Thanks Brandi for the award, now it's time for some shameless plugging on your behalf....
Check out Brandi's new Etsy shop!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Musical Monday- Chicks that ROCK!

Musical Monday

There are weekly themes over at Musical Monday for April. Check it out and join the fun.

My chick that ROCKS is Ani Difranco. She's a soulful, indie, jazzy, angry chick that I fell in love with in high school and still enjoy on those angry days. She's most amazing in person and I still count the concert of hers that I've attended as one of the best days of my life. I can't guarantee any of these songs don't contain curse words. In fact all of her songs contain curse words. So don't listen if that will bother you. In fact I won't even put my favorite on here because there are too many curse words.

As Is- Kinda a love song that I remember driving around town singing thinking of my hubby (well he wasn't my hubby then, but you know).

Fuel- A great statement on society... As true now as it was 10 years ago.

Next week's Theme: The song you're embarrassed to admit you LOVE.... that should be a good one...

I'm Baaaaack!

It's been a long hiatus but I'm back to my weekly posts. Especially with a new one too! I do this every week so I thought I would share.... It's Menu Planning Monday! Check out for others who are participating in this! So that means not one, but two posts on Monday! Can you handle it? I'll see if I can.

I've been menu planning for a while, all in an effort to save money. And let me tell you, it really works. I've tried weekly and monthly plans, but just can't be organized enough to keep a good monthly plan. I try to make out a month at a time purposefully leaving holes so that I move things as I go and weekly work around it based on that outline.

So here's my weekly plan:

Monday- "Fancy" Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup (Fancy means with cheddar and provolone instead of American)
Tuesday- Chicken and Rice Casserole and Broccoli (made with Crockpot Rotisserie Chicken, which I'll then use the chicken for the rest of the week)
Wednesday- Quesadillas
Thursday- Chicken Fried Rice
Friday- Sausage Pasta
Saturday- BBQ pork sandwiches
Easter Sunday- (Brunch) Ham, Quiche, Fruit Salad, Waffles, Chocolate Covered Strawberries, Deviled Eggs
Monday- Buffalo Chicken Wings and Spinach Artichoke Dip

We're having "more" than we normally would because guests will be in town Wednesday through next week.

Saturday, April 4, 2009


If you didn't see my twitter or facebook, yesterday Max took his first steps!
He's been cruising and standing on his own for so long, I just figured he'd wait forever, but yesterday we finally conned him into it! He took two steps three times for a total of six. :)
Luckily Adam was home for it as well, I'm not sure he would have believed me otherwise.
And then I think, "OH NO! What have we gotten ourselves into?"

Friday, April 3, 2009

A couple of things....

This is more of a bullet list kind of day.... I don't have much time, but a lot on my mind....
  • This week has been a tough one for me emotionally. But it went by quickly and I'm excited for that
  • I'm super happy to be planning our next "Disney Vacation" for next year. I get to make reservations today hopefully. I've lovingly started to think of it at Kipp Family Vacation 2.0 since there are officially two kiddos this time around (last time Max was still on the inside)
  • Tonight is another Youth Group Lock In. I'm tired just thinking about it. Good thing I also forgot about it all week until this morning while I was in the shower. A good excuse to take a nap this afternoon.
  • I <3 Knitting. It makes me so happy to understand something new.
  • We have the happiest little kid in the world. He just loves to laugh lately, especially at himself.
  • Crochet projects=this previously mentioned scarf/wrap out of Cascade Wool. Yum!
  • Reading The Magician's Nephew by CS Lewis (it's the first of The Chronicles of Narnia) and this line struck me (Aslan speaking) "This is what happens to those who pluck and eat fruits at the wrong time and in the wrong way. The fruit is good, but they loathe it everafter." Ahhhh so true.
  • Remember this Birdie? I made a couple of them last year. Glad I kept one, Max loves to play with him....