Wednesday, October 29, 2014


It's her birthday.

It's so nuts.

You know that she's 30

Like 30 years old.

My little girl...

is 30

So, yea.

Sunday, October 26, 2014


These two were making secret plans here.  Well I think Avery was making the secret plans however letting Uncle Mickey in on it.

If I recall correctly she was letting him know of her plan to sneak up behind Poppa and scare him.

After she and Mic Mic worked out the details,

she carried out her plan.  She did scare Poppa.

And then she ran away.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Balloon Chase Sunday

Sunday after a great morning of worship at our church, a nice lunch, and a little UNO we headed down to the river front to see a balloon chase.  

It looks like Avery is breaking out in song here.  Actually the tug boat blew its horn and she was waving to them.

We had to get a little creative in the entertainment department for a bit as the balloon chase took forever to decide they would actually take off.

So Avery decided to add a few head shots to her portfolio...

Then she and Lesley snuck up on Uncle Mickey and threw something at him.

They played a little chase.

The day was beautiful.  The river was beautiful.  The girl was too.

The real chase finally began.

Getting a little sassy here...

And, I have good news.  The paper reported today that the balloon race will go on as usual next year!

WOOT WOOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Chili Cookoff

Once upon a time, my husband NEVER cooked.  Now I am not saying that he cooks now.   He doesn't.  But one day as a joke, as I was heading out the door to go to work on a Monday (when he was off on Mondays) I jokingly said, "Why dont you fix dinner tonight, ok, thanks." and left.  Much to my surprise when I got home that evening I walked into the kitchen and I distinctly remember thinking "What smells so good?" I was soooo confused.  He said that when I told him to make dinner that morning as I was heading out the door, he thought "Hmmm, I should surprise her and actually do it."  So he found my book that I have lots of recipes in and searched for something he thought he could do.  Turns out he chose his moms recipe for homemade chili.  That was what smelled so good.  And boy was it ever.  Seriously.  Its better than my chili.  Since that day several years ago he is now the chili maker in our home.  Some guys grill, Todd does chili. Thats all he cooks, but he does it well.   I love chili days.

Then there is Charlie.  Several years ago, he decided to make chili for Casey.  I will never forget, he called me one day and said "Mom, I made chili tonight and I think somethings wrong with it."  He proceeded to tell me exactly what he did which included how much garlic he used.  He said the recipe called for 2 or 3 (I cant remember now) cloves of garlic.  After questioning him about the garlic I realized he thought that a clove was one entire BULB of garlic. So YES he used at least 2 entire BULBS of garlic in that chili.  Thats gotta be at least 20 or 25 cloves of garlic.  Yes I would say something was wrong with that chili.  I laughed so hard.  They said their house smelled like garlic for like a month!  So funny.  His chili has since greatly improved.  As a matter of fact he always says how his is so good.  He thought he could win a cookoff against us.  We begged to differ.  A little family feud going on.  We have talked many times about doing a chili cookoff between the two.

This weekend after looking at the beautiful beautiful balloons, we had our CHILI COOKOFF!

We divided the stove up.  Todd had half and Charlie the other.

Casey and I were the Sous chefs!  We did the chopping for the guys just so we could help out.  They did the cooking though.

Avery decided to be the resident photographer.

They got it simmering and the house smelled good!

This is Avery explaining the voting process we were about to have after everyone tasted the chilis.

The living room was full of eager tasters and voters.  All of whom apparently thought it necessary to throw their shoes into the middle of the living room.

This is Adam enjoying MORE.
 This is Todd tasting Charlies, I think.

I thought it was pretty funny that when Matt tasted Todd's bowl he said "OK that one surprised me!"  LOL  He didnt expect it to be good!  hehehe

After everyone had tried both chilis, Avery gave them all a sticky note on which to vote.

And the winner of the Chili Cookoff and a Red Hot Chili Pepper is...

TODD!!!!!!  Also known as Poppa!

From the look of the pots at the end of things, I think its safe to say they liked both of them.

That was really fun and not to mention YUMMY!  I stick to my original thought that Todds was the best but Charlies was pretty dang good too.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Chasing Balloons

 This past weekend was Balloon Races!  This was the first year in forever that Todd has been off on a Saturday to be able to go chase them with me.  Either I havent gone at all or I have gone alone.  Not nearly as much fun.  This year he was home though.  YAY  And it so turns out that Casey and her family were here with us so we planned on taking Avery with us and chasing.  However, believe this or not, Casey and Charlie were both up and ready to go with us.  So early Saturday we headed out.

 Thankfully our friend Tonja gave us the info on where to go.  We saw several getting ready to go up.

 I was getting photos of this colorful balloon and the owner told me I could get up close and personal and get shots from inside.  Cool!  I wish she would have offered me a ride.  I would have taken her up on it.
 The wind changed or something and no more balloons were going to take off from where we were so we left that spot and headed to where they were suppose to land.  We made a pit stop at this famous spot on our way though.  I LOVE their powdered donuts.  Mmmmm
 We took our donuts with us to the mall parking lot where they were suppose to land.  And there were plenty to look at there.

They were really pretty and we had a great time.  I sure hope they continue the Balloon Races here in town.  There is talk of cutting it out.  I hope not.