Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Land O'Lakes Cocoa Classics

My sister Ashley brought me this hot chocolate when she came to visit. I just tried it for the first time yesterday, and I have already made three cups since then. Sooooo good. Definitely some of the best hot chocolate I have ever had. It doesn't hurt to stir in a splash of cream at the end, either. Thanks Ashley!

Don't forget to cast your vote in my 'Tis the Season poll in the top right corner of my blog!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Charlotte Bobcats Chinese Culture Night

The Bobcats were playing the Houston Rockets last Friday, which is the team Yao Ming is on (and Yao Ming is injured, so he ended up not being there!). With that in mind, they made it a Chinese Culture night and invited Smith Academy students to participate. The 4th grade students did a dance on the court beforehand, and the rest of the students got to go down there for some pictures. Can you spot Colin?

It was a good Daddy-Son night for Chad and Colin. Colin came home pumped up that the Bobcats won, and Chad said that he was actually paying attention to the game. He lasted the whole time - I think part of the fun of the evening was staying up past 10!

Yes, Colin is frowning in this picture that I took before they left. He thought they were taking LYNX and just found out that they weren't. And yes, Chad has a soda spill on his leg. Cherry Coke Zero, to be exact. Thank you Roy ;o)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

'Tis the Season Polls, Week 1

Holiday Traditions-gotta love them.
We all have some different ideas about just what makes the holidays special.
Let's revive some old holiday polls, starting with the great debate:


Vote on the right, and feel free to add any comments/arguments on this post. Voting ends on Friday at noon (my time)

Still working on it.

At the Worldwide Leadership Training a couple of weeks ago, Elder Bednar talked about how he wished he could eliminate the word "meeting" from our vocabulary, and then he said this:

"....If members of families, as they come together, would think in terms of 'I'm preparing to participate in a revelatory experience with my family,' instead of 'going to a meeting',...I think we would prepare and act much differently."

Love it. Happy Sabbath!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Train ride and Imaginon

My sister Ashley came to visit for Thanksgiving with her husband Roy and three kids. Ashley has probably been to Charlotte 4 or 5 times now but had never been uptown, so we decided to take the kids on a little Lynx ride up to Imaginon. Imaginon houses a library and the Children's Theatre of Charlotte. It is also directly across the street from a Lynx station, so it was a good way to spend an afternoon with the kids and Granny (who is always a good sport about coming along and helping out). There are a couple of interactive play stations inside the library, and the kids were entertained for a good hour and a half. We rode the train back, hit McDonald's, and headed home pretty worn out.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

For the joy of human love

Brother, sister

Parent, child

Friends on ear
th and friends above

For all gentle thoughts and mild

Lord of All, to Thee we raise

This, our hymn of grateful praise

All pictures taken Thanksgiving 2010 at Bobby and Sabina's. Happy Thanksgiving 2009, 2008

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Veteran's Day 2010

The Jeppsons and Colemans all met at a park to play some kickball and have a little picnic.

My brother Levi and Chad goofing with Levi's son Nolan.

Evan and Jovie, my mom and Nolan (trying to hold her at second base), Colin

Bobby's son Santiago, Levi's youngest girls Jovie and Callie, Jovie and me with the big belly

Afterwards we went just down the road and got some Aloha Snow love. This was definitely the highlight of my kids' day. We went last year on Veteran's Day and I think I am liking this tradition.

I got an incredible brownie sundae. That is Gabe's finger reaching out to snatch some whipped cream, and Colin in the background saying, "No fair! I want one!"

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Dear Chaddycakes,

It was a good day. The two youngest had a check-up. Oliver was all over the Dr's office, trying to change the AC, trying to get into the Hazardous Materials bin on the wall again and again, scowling at the Dr who shined a light in his eyes. Gabe was surprisingly chatty. They got to lay side by side as the Dr. felt their bellies. Gabe didn't cry a lick when he got his finger pricked or his flu shot. Ollie cried his betrayed-toddler-cry (How could you hold me down while they did that, mom?!) You'll be happy to hear that Oliver's weight is officially back on the charts. The final verdict? We have happy and healthy children and I am so thankful for that.

Oliver took a long long nap. He was still asleep when Colin got home and grumpy about waking up. I swooped them off to the park to enjoy the gorgeous day we were having. They headed straight for the sandbox and stayed there most of the time. I taught them how to dig for the deepest sand to make strong castles and everyone was happy...

Until Oliver started to claim all the sand toys as his own and threw a fit about sharing. A crying, snotty, little boy rolling in the sand is a sad sight to see.

He eventually got over it and we had a lovely afternoon.

We stayed until the sun was almost gone and then came home to Totino's. I know you hate that pizza, but I gotta tell you love, that stuff was sooo good. This was the boys' first time, and they were impressed.

After dinner, the two big boys got much-needed haircuts. Everyone got a shower, we read books and scriptures (maybe without the "s"), and then headed off to bed. As I sat waiting for them to fall asleep Oliver decided that bedtime was the perfect time unload in his diaper. I whispered to him that I was going to get some wipes, and he nodded solemnly from his bed (Gabe was already asleep). The minute I left the room he got up, ran into Colin's room, giggling, and woke him up. That kid, Dew.

All three of those kids. They are so beautiful, tucked in their beds, sleeping and angelic. We are so blessed, and you are so missed.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Do you like my muffin tops?

I saw this recipe for Chocolate Pumpkin Muffin Tops on my cousin Olivia's blog awhile ago and have wanted to try it out since then. I had some leftover pumpkin, so I finally did.

It calls for only three ingredients - chocolate cake mix (maybe I should have used chocolate fudge like the recipe said instead of milk chocolate), 15 oz of pumpkin, and 1/4 cup of chocolate chips . You mix everything together, then scoop the batter out onto a cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 12-14 minutes. The recipe says you can make 48 muffin tops, but I didn't come anywhere close to that.

Oliver, Gabe, and Chad really liked them. Colin didn't at all. I thought they were okay, but very sugary, and I am more into fried/sour foods these days, so I only ate 2 or 3 before I was done (which is highly unusual for me). Will I make them again someday? Probably. So easy!

Does "muffin top" make you think of 30 Rock? If so, I love you.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Whole Season of Soccer

With two games and an end-of-the-year party for Colin, we were at the soccer fields for over three hours yesterday. It was in the 50s, which doesn't sound that cold, but the wind was blowing, and it definitely chilled us after awhile. I can't believe we were sweating just a little over a month ago.

Colin had a great season on Team Spain and cried last night that it was over. He loves soccer and says that he wants to play again in the spring. I will miss it - he needs that time three times a week to run and run and run. Now that it is over he has time to start piano, and he is extremely excited about that.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

My eyes are burning

The kids and I have been home sick the last couple of days and I have been using it as a chance to get some maternity and winter shopping done online. The nice thing about having three boys is knowing that when I buy a pair of jeans or uniform pants for Colin, they will definitely get used over the years.

While looking for the boys, I have allowed myself to take a peek at the little girls' clothes. Surprisingly, I haven't liked a lot of it. Maybe I'm just not used to it, but so much of it is just such a bright pink! It is so jarring to me and it feels like they think all girl clothes need to scream "girl girl girl!". I have found some pieces that are just adorable though, and I love this knit cap and dress paired together from The Children's Place.

If I were blessing a baby girl in the fall or winter and wanted something a little bit different, I think this outfit would be precious (and very affordable too!). For anything else, I realize the color choice is very impractical. It would have to be one of those church dresses you put on right before you leave and take off the second you get home, praying the whole time that they don't have a blow-out.

If you happen to be shopping at The Children's Place online, use the code M3C2010 to get 20% off. Not bad! Expires November 15.

A Brand New Kid (kinda)

Ollie on Tuesday morning, waiting with Chad, Gabe, and my mom for my ultrasound (notice that my mom wore pink for good luck :o)

Yesterday I decided that the rat's nest was really out of control. It was time for a change. All the blonde locks came off, and my little baby grew about a year in 15 minutes. Now it is like looking at a brand new kid, only not really, because he looks so familiar to me - so much like his big brother Colin. I love seeing his pretty face, and he looks so much neater, but I already miss those rascally blonde locks.

Pajamas first seen here. Where does the time go?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Halloween Madness

It started last Wednesday, when I was in charge of preschool. I *might* have gone a little overboard coming up with creative snacks and crafts for the kiddos, but it was fun. The mini-jack-o-lantern you see above was a hollowed out orange that was then stuffed with fruit, with a green spoon sticking out the top. Very cute, but I must admit that that one was definitely not worth the effort.

On Friday we had our ward Fall Festival with a trunk-or-treat. The boys thought it would fun this year to all dress as ninjas. The second picture is blurry but I had to include it because Ollie was trying to make a tough face like his brothers.

I thought that Chad and my parents had some of the best costumes of the night. My dad had a costume that matched my mom's but I didn't get a picture of them together. My mom also won the pumpkin carving contest for the second year in a row!

On Saturday my mom and dad had all the grandkids over to play Halloween games and to celebrate Bryce's birthday.

Fun times! Then on Sunday we did the trick or treat dinner that I already blogged about. Now onto Thanksgiving!