Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Girls Night Out

Tonight I went out with some girlfriends to dinner!  Nothing does my soul better than going out with friends.  It's nice not worrying about cutting up a kids meal or them throwing a tantrum in the middle of the restaurant.  It was so great to sit down, enjoy a meal and hang out with friends.  

And this afternoon Ryan smoked me in some Candyland.  This boy loves to play games.  I'd say it's been a good day!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Swings and Things

We had a nice weekend around here.  The weather has been exceptionally cool for late July but we will take it.  It's beautiful and very pleasant outside.  I'll definitely take some park days over the pool. 

Friday night we went to Eli's BBQ with some of Matt's new friends from school.  Usually I am dragging him along to meet my friends but the tables were turned this time.  We had a great time and enjoyed some delicious BBQ.  Yum!

Saturday morning I had a Mops thing in the morning then that afternoon Matt and I went to Homearoma - a huge home show just north of the Cincy.  I love looking at houses so it's always fun to see decoration ideas and floorplans. I drug Matt along so I would have someone to tell what I liked and didn't like and what I would like in our next house.  It was good and we enjoyed spending the afternoon together. 

Saturday night we were invited to a cookout with some of Matt's old co-workers.  We took the boys and they had a blast playing with the other kids there.  All the kids there were boys, 7 total.  It worked out perfect and everyone had a blast!  Sadly I didn't get any pictures. 

Since the weather has been amazing we played outside today.  The boys wanted to first play in their sandbox then they migrated to the swingset.  I guess it's been a while since Colton has swung in the babyswing.  He was a little unsure at first.  At parks now he wants to sit in the regular swing.  He does pretty well and loves to swing.  He's growing up way too fast.  

And this was Ryan's 'handsome' face. Ha!!!  I held up my phone to take a picture and said 'look handsome'.  That boy is a mess!  He cracks me up!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

A Heavy Heart

My heart has been so heavy since I learned of my friend Will's passing on Friday night.  I went to college at Union with Will and his wife Angie.  Will was diagnosed with cancer last October.  Only ten months ago!  

Sadly he was stricken with an aggressive and rapid growing cancer in his maxillary sinus cavity.  He had surgery to remove the tumor in November.  

By January/February it had already spread to his spine and vertebra.  Unfortunately the cancer was not responding to the radiation and chemo.  In March the doctors sent him home on hospice and gave him 2-3 weeks to live.  

His wife Angie has been so strong and amazing through this whole journey!  Please keep her in your prayers especially over the next few days, weeks and months.  Will was one of those people who was everyone's friend.  He has made such an impact on so many lives through his faith, courage, and strength.  They never gave up and prayed and believed God would heal Will.  Our hope and comfort come from the knowledge that he is no longer in pain and is healed sitting at the feet of Jesus!  

You can read more about their journey on GoTeamGray.  

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Darn Good Chocolate Cake

 I made this Darn Good Chocolate Cake for Matt's birthday last week and it was amazing!!!!  The Cake Doctor uses a bunt pan but I made it in 2, 8 inch layered cake pans.  I used store bought vanilla frosting and it was delicious together.  

1 package plain devil's food or dark chocolate fudge cake mix
1 package (3.9 oz) chocolate instant pudding mix
4 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Place the cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, sour cream, warm water, and oil in a large mixing bowl.  Blend on low speed for 1 minute.  Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Continue beating on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes.  The batter should look thick.
Pour the batter into prepared pan.  Smoothing it out with a rubber spatula.  Place the pan in the oven.
Bake for 45-50 minutes.
Frost cake with your favorite icing after completely cooled!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Few Things

I just have a few random things today!
The boys were being so sweet in the car last night on the way home from dinner.  We diverted from our usual Cracker Barrel monday night dinner and went to City BBQ instead.  Love when these brothers are sweet!

My best friend introduced me to this book a few years ago.  I'm not sure why I didn't buy it right away but for whatever reason I finally bought it last week!  I made Matt's birthday cake from it and it was outstanding.  All the recipes are from a boxed cake mix with some added ingredients.  Yum!!!  I love cake!  Can't wait to make another one!

 I saw this beautiful wreath on pinterest the other night and I am in love with it!  It's simple and cute!  My front door is currently bare and desperately needs something.  I am inspired and hope to try making this beauty this weekend! 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Let's Celebrate

If you know me you know I love to celebrate birthdays!  I think of my birthday as a national holiday!  For Matt's birthday and the boys I love to do sweet things for them and make it a very special day!  I did make the most amazing chocolate cake last week that I will have to blog soon!

The highlight of our weekend was celebrating Matt's birthday at Nada restaurant downtown on Saturday night.  It was our first time there but I had heard many great things about it.  It's an upscale mexican restaurant.  It did not disappoint and was outstanding.  The perfect place to take Matt for his birthday!  We LOVED it!

The service was impeccable and the food was amazing!  We both had delicious margarita's and to-die-for chips and queso as an appetizer.  It was SO good and we can't wait to go back.

We spent the remainder of the weekend at the pool and doing stuff around the house.  It's suppose to cool down a little this week so maybe we can take a little break from the pool and hit the park.  

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Happy Birthday Matt

Today is Matt's 33rd birthday!  I was teasing him last night telling him the royal baby might make it's debut on his birthday.  He didn't seem as thrilled as me.  I thought that would be so cool! 

I have never been more proud of Matt as I have been this past year.   It took so much courage for him to leave his good job as an engineer and go back to school to pursue a new career.  He is kicking butt at school and doing really well.  He has the best work ethic and always puts 100% into everything he does.  He is the smartest person I know and has the biggest heart.  
Matt played Zingo with Ryan this afternoon while I made dinner.  Ryan and Colton LOVE their daddy and are crazy about him.  They love spending time with him especially wrestling in the floor.  

Ryan told me yesterday he wanted to get daddy a balloon for his birthday so we stopped by the store on our way home and picked up the perfect balloon.  I made an oh so yummy chocolate cake tonight.  Actually it's called "Darn Good Chocolate Cake" and it definitely was that.  

Happy Birthday to my better half, my rock and knight in shining armor.  

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

A Few Good Reads

Our morning started off with Bible study!  The boys get to play with all their friends in a backyard full of toys, sprinklers, water table, sandbox and swing set.   They love it and I loved the two hours that I can dive into God's word and glean a little nugget of what He wants to teach me!

This study of the names of God by Kay Arthur has been so good!  It's amazing that each week it's just exactly what I need to hear.  Funny how God works like that.  

I've also been reading Big Momma's book Sparkly Green Earrings.  It's hilarious and I find myself laughing out loud.  Matt will look over and say "what is so funny?"  I just giggle and say Oh it's just Melanie!

The next book on my list of Unglued by Lysa Terkeurst.  I've heard A-mazing things about this book so I can't wait to read it!  Lysa is going to be a speaker at Mops convention in October so I wanted to read at least one of her books before then.

I'm a slow reader and I don't have alot of free time to read but when I do I love it!  Nothing like getting a good book and diving in!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Pool, Party and El Picante

We had a great weekend.  The weather is starting to warm up quite a bit around here so Saturday was a perfect day for the pool.  I had the genius idea to check the kids into childcare at the gym and Matt and I got a little jump start on our summer tans.  

We went to the kids after about an hour and brought them out to the pool to play.  They loved it and everyone had a great time.   Best idea EVER!!!

Saturday afternoon we headed to Elizabeth's birthday party at Little Gym.  Both boys were a little shy at first but soon they were running around with all their friends.  Perfect to burn off some energy.  

After the boys worked up a good sweat we retired to the party room for some cake and ice cream.  Yes, please!  Do you see that beautiful birthday cake?  It was so pretty and SO good!  Anissa said this lady makes them out of her house.  

My friend Anissa just moved into a new house on Friday...and the party was on Saturday!  Whew!  I know she was tired and probably crashed Saturday night.  

It was a fabulous party and everyone had so much fun!

After the party we were ready for dinner so we headed to El Picante for some yummy goodness.  I thought the boys would just munch on chips and salsa for dinner since they had just had cake and ice cream but they ate some chicken and did really well.  

Have I mentioned El Pincante has the best Margaritas?  Oh my, they are good!

Sunday we went to church and came home for lunch!  I went to Costco and the grocery while the boys napped and Matt worked on school work.  Yeah, not very exciting but that was our day!  

Matt has just four weeks of summer classes left!  Yay!  These will be a stressful next four weeks for him but I know he will finish strong!

His birthday is this Thursday!  I asked him what kind of cake he wanted and he said I didn't have to make him a cake!  Uhm, hello, I want birthday cake!!!  We are all looking forward to celebrating!

Friday, July 12, 2013

5 on Friday

I'm linking up with 5 on Friday today!
Here are some randoms from our week!


 1. This morning Ryan had his first day of Little Gym Camp.  He was super excited and I was excited for him to play with his friends and meet some new friends.  He said he loved it and can't wait to go back.  

2.  I dropped Ryan off at 9 and had a little time to kill before my kickboxing class started so Colton and I headed to the park.  We had the park to ourselves and it was sunny with a nice breeze.  Colton had a ball.  I loved having some one on one time with my sweet baby boy.  

3.  So after my workout class Colton and I went out to the pool since I had some time to kill before picking up Ryan.  We left in time to get him when I realized my phone was blowing up with calls and text messages.  I thought Ryan's camp ended at 1pm but it ended at noon!!!  I felt terrible!  I ran over and picked him up and apologized a million times over.  Definitely not mother of the year material.

4.  I have not had many cookie orders lately so I've been staying busy during nap time cleaning and trying to organize and declutter our home.  I will love it when we can keep all the toys down in the basement but Colton is still just too young to let him play in the basement alone.

5.  For dinner tonight we grilled hamburgers and made corn on the cob and roasted potatoes.  One of my favorite summer meals. It was so yummy and just what I wanted.  We promised the boys if they ate well we would take them to get ice cream.  Colton was so funny and kept going to each person with his mouth open asking for a bit.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Just Another Day in the Sun

Today was another pool day.  It was beautiful and HOT!  We packed lunches and headed out to the pool after my workout class.  The boys played so hard and had a blast.  Ryan is getting so good at jumping in off the side and putting his whole head and face in the water.  He loves to get the dive sticks off the bottom of the pool.  We were all exhausted by the time we got home and all took naps. 

And this boy LOVES some watermelon!  I got brave and let him have a whole slice!  He cleaned it up fast.  

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Tuesday Tidbits

Just a few things we have been up to lately.  The boys have been loving playing in the water from the water table to the pool.  The sun finally came out yesterday so we made our way to the pool.  The boys had the best time playing.  Ryan loved jumping off the side of the pool.  He found a dive stick and loved diving in the water after it.

Last night I took the boys to Cracker Barrel again since Matt was in class!  The boys did great and ate so well.  The waiter even brought a piece of fried okra for Ryan to try and surprisingly he tried and LIKED it!  Holy Moly!  Must be my southern roots coming through!  Too bad the only place I know you can get fried okra is CB.  Ha!  

 This morning we went to the gym then headed to kroger for our weekly shopping trip.  Ryan was a great helper and Colton was good eating all the samples in the store.  

It's hard to believe the summer is half way over.  We have had a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to the rest of the summer.  I hope it involved lots of pool time, park time, riding bikes and playing outside.  

Monday, July 8, 2013

Seven Years

Seven years ago today I married the sweetest, smartest and most handsome man!  He is my best friend and I love him more today than I did seven years ago.  

He is my rock and keeps me grounded.  He makes me laugh and have fun!  A few months ago we heard a speaker say "every marriage has a 'wow' person and a 'how' person.  I started thinking about that's so true.  I am the wow and Matt is the how.  I have big dreams and am always thinking about big things we can do and Matt's response is always "and how are we going to do that?" Ha!

We have been so blessed in these seven years!  We have been blessed with the two most adorable boys!  In this new stage of life with Matt going back to school I am so thankful for his hard work and dedication to our family.  I am excited for our future and can't wait to see what God has in store for us.

Saturday night Papau and Yaya came over to watch the boys so we could go out and celebrate.  We went to Jags Steakhouse and it was AMAZING!!!  SO good!  We both had the steak and it was unbelievable!  Matt had the heath bar cheesecake for dessert and I had the apple crisp - both were very good!  It was a wonderful night celebrating!