Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Feelin' Frappe

I have found a new drug - a frappe!  This all started when my mother made me a frappe in her new Mr. Coffee Frappe machine.  My mother is such a trendy gal ;-).  Anyway, I thought only to humor her and did not think I would like it - after all, I'm not a coffee drinker.  Boy was I wrong!   I love them!  I crave them!  I want a Frappe machine!  Too bad they cost $70.  So, I figured I would enjoy an occasional frappe from McD's.  They are really good too and only cost about $2 - an occasional treat, right?  Well, after I checked out the nutritional value in one, I decided against it!  Wow-a whopping 550 calories.  What to do, what to do. . . . . 

My frappe salvation - Hungry Girl!!!!  She has several frappe recipes that are copy cat versions of Starbucks with very few calories (and WW points).  I thought I would try this one.  It seemed easy enough to do and I already own a blender, so no major expenses!  However, after I got Tanner hooked on the caramel version from McD's, he was reluctant to try a Hungry Girl recipe - especially in vanilla (go figure:-)).  So, I took this HG recipe and converted it into a caramel version.  It is honestly just as good as the McD's - no joke!  Even Tanner was impressed and gave me a high 5.  As a mother of all boys, it is good to find something you can enjoy with your sons other than football, Star Wars, and hunting.

Here is my recipe:

Caramel Frappe

4 oz. light vanilla soymilk
1 oz. fat free coffeemate liquid creamer - caramel vanilla flavor
2 tsp. instant coffee
3 tsp. ff vanilla coffeemate powder dissolved in 1 oz. warm water
1 oz. vanilla (or caramel) flavored syrup - sugar free
2 pts. Stevia
1 cup crushed ice
1 squirt ff caramel ice cream topping

whip it up in your blender and if you want it to look "fancy" like the McD's, add a spray of ff whip cream and a drizzle of the ff caramel topping.   
This makes 1 large or 2 small frappes - the whole thing is only 2 points! 
I am so happy about this find and I plan to do some experimenting to make different flavors.  I'll report my findings here!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Just wondering. . .

I find it amazing how quickly our children grow.  As a parent, we always dream and wonder what our children will become someday.  We hope they will be hard working, loving, and caring individuals.  But I always wonder what they will do for a living - their career.  I hope it will be something that gives them pleasure and that they find fulfilling, but also can put food on the table - enough food for many many of my grandchildren :-).  

As you look at the little faces of a 2 year old, it is hard to imagine that one day they might be a carpenter, a banker, a construction worker, etc.  For each of my children, though, I have wondered what it would be like if they were to become a preacher.  Perhaps it is because all of my boys have enjoyed "playing" church at home.  Kevin built Ty and Tanner a pulpit for them to play at leading singing, reading the scripture, and pounding their fists while spewing fire and brimstone!  Now, some 15 years later, Dan has built Levi and Noah a pulpit also.  These photos are just too cute not to share.


Saturday, September 11, 2010


We must never forget those who were murdered 9 years ago today, and all the families that will never be the same again.   How tragic that some seem to have forgotten the feeling of that day and how America was forever changed.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

TGIF Photos

Posting a favorite photo each Friday was inspiration that came from Rita at CoffeeShop.  Each Friday, I am also posting a favorite photo of the week.  It was a busy week with lots going on, and it was hard to chose, so I chose 2 (I have issues, I know).  This one is just so sweet - it is exactly what a dad should be - supportive and worthy of following!   Please note the gun holster on his hip - dads should also be protective!  LOL

This is one of Noah in the pumpkin patch blowing milk weed fuzz (yes, I believe that is the scientific name:-)).   It is not a fantastic shot as the shadow is a bit dark, even after messing in PSE, but I love how his hands are outreached and how the fuzz glows in the light.
Enjoy your weekend.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Decorating Help, Please!

This is actually a funny story.  When I married Dan in 2005, I became the co-owner of a night stand.  This night stand was given to Dan, I believe, and did not match anything either of us owned (I believe it is a French Provincial style), but it was a night stand with drawers and was very sturdy, so I was reluctant to give it away.  This night stand is now in storage and Dan has tried, unsuccessfully, to get me to sell it.  I am determined that I will do something with this stand to be able to use it and have it fit into our rustic decor.  

Fast forward to summer of 2010.  I go to a garage sale and low and behold they have a full sized head board and foot board and a large dresser with a mirror for sale.  Guess what????? It matches my night stand perfectly!  Oh my - I just had to have it.  It was fate.  Not to mention that I got all these pieces for $25!  What a deal, right????  Dan was not as enthusiastic about my purchase as I had hoped, and Tyler was even less so, as I put the headboard on his bed and found it out in the other room within the hour.  I do recall some yelling from the basement about him not being a girl. . .

Fast forward again to present - what in the world am I going to do with this French provincial style bedroom suit in a rustic cabin decorated house???   Oh dear, impulse buying is not a good thing.

So, I am now facing the dilemma of what to do with this set.  It is a white laminate with gold trim (does not go well with animal hides and fishing themes).  Please, any and all advice will be appreciated.  Things you should know:

1) I do have experience painting laminate and I know you must use a special primer.

2) I am not against using black

3) I am the mother of 4 boys and this will inevitably be in one of their bedrooms, so anything "feminine" is out of the question.

That being said. . . . . PLEASE HELP ME!!!!!!  Will paint even solve the problem?  I mean, there are a lot of curves and designs on it that paint won't cover - perhaps black leather on the headboard?   I just don't know and I need some expert opinions.

Here are some photos:

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Long Weekends

When you don't work outside the home, one day is often the same as the next.   How sad.  However, I remember working and I remember loving long weekends.  This past Labor Day, the weather was gorgeous and we decided to go to a nearby "hill" and hike it.  It has been on our "to do" list for a while now.  The area is called Levis Mound, and for obvious reasons, we wanted to take the boys there. 

Levi kept telling us it was "his hill".  Like he discovered it or something.  He did really well on the hike and only got a bit fussy at the end.  Noah was a typical 2 year old who did not get a nap - need I say more?

There were some beautiful views of the surrounding area.  For my PA friends, this hill was high, but it was more of an optical illusion because it could not been seen until you were right there at it - so weird.  I hiked up Beautiful Lookout this past month and believe me, I was huffing a lot more than on this hill.  But, nonetheless it was an awesome day with 3 of my favorite guys.

Then we took the boys fishing on the Black River.  They were not so interested in fishing as they were with playing with worms and generally goofing off.

Do you see any resemblance here?  I thought Levi got these weird faces all on his own - but now I have proof they are from his dad. . .

Friday, September 3, 2010

TGIF Photos

Inspired by Rita's Friday Photo Bliss, I am posting my own favorite photo of the week each Friday. 

This week started my son's junior year in high school, and here he is on the first day.  I always take my boys' picture on the first day of school.

 He's a kind, loving, awesome young man and I love him with all my heart.  This boy has a plan for his future mapped out and Lord willing, he will get there.  His list of high school courses makes me have nightmares about the homework alone, but he takes it all in stride.  By the time he graduates high school, he plans to have 12 college credits already under his belt!  Okay, forgive me -  I'm done bragging!