Relaxing Sunday and Nutter Fluffer Quesadillas

We had a very relaxing Sunday today 🙂

I got up early to get a pan of Roasted Zucchini Lasagna in the oven before church…  at this point you might hate me slash think I am crazy… so it could bake while we were gone.  It was a risk.  I’ve never taken it before, and it turned out FABULOUSLY! Covered for 2.5 hours at 250, perfect!  I topped it with cheese, and turned up the oven to 350 for a few minutes, and was easily able to give it just enough time to rest before lunch.

Speaking of… good friends of ours came from Ames for the afternoon, and we had a blast chatting it up.  Sadly it was soggy out and we weren’t able to play a few rounds of Kubb with them, but life goes on and we had just as much fun talking about everything from meat dresses to stepdads.  Did you see the connection?  Me either, but it was good 🙂

This evening, we hung my new kitchen shelves…

I talked to my mom on the phone for a bit, worked on my new recipe box…

… and I made pot sticker turkey burgers for dinner. (and they were mind blowing)

Matt and I were craving a little chocolate after dinner, so I finally whipped us up some yummy nutter fluffer quesadillas!

They were super easy..  a little Nutella on a tortilla

and a little bit of marshmellow creme… and a warm skillet

and viola!

Ooey Gooey Nutella…. mmmmm… delicious!

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Remembering…

This afternoon Matt & I headed over to the state capitol to see the memorial they put up in remembrance of those who lost their lives on Sept 11, 1002.  There was a flag representing each individual on the east lawn.  It was moving,..

This mom was taking photos of her daughter, and I thought it was kinda cute.  At first I wasn’t sure if I thought it was cute or irreverent, but then I saw some girls playing among the flags, and that I wasn’t so fond of.

AND…. the photo of Matt 🙂  Who is downstairs right now.  Who asked me if he could watch football.  Love that man!


Hello FALL!!!

We celebrated the upcoming onset of fall this past weekend by trekking up north to Minneapolis/St Paul.  It was about time that we got out of Des Moines for a few days, and it couldn’t have been a more perfect weekend!

We drove up after I got off work on Saturday afternoon, and stayed with some good friends of our, the Hills.  Sunday morning we were treated with homemade cinnamon rolls, and breakfast with the very talkative Hill children… it was awesome.  Other friends visiting from Iowa City joined us for church, lunch after Kirsten’s black bean soup… YUM), and a trip to Minnehaha Falls….

After the falls, we branched out on our own, and headed over to the Mall of America to do some shopping.  I am on the lookout for black and white work clothes since they are changing my dress code at work in a couple months.  Sadly, I had no luck at the MOA.  However, we DID try a cinnabon for the first time, and it was deliciously delightful, and I am very glad there isn’t one in my mall 🙂

After that we headed back to the Hills’ via….

Matt’s Bar where we got ourselves a couple juicy lucys…two burger patties cooked together with molten cheese in the middle of them.  Delicious, especially since I didn’t end up with a molten cheese burn on my hand!

Toe end out our Sunday Madeline, age 7, read Matt, age 34, a bedtime story 🙂  The kids recited “If you give a moose a muffin: at the falls, and Matt only understood a fraction of it, so he wanted to read the actual story… Madeline did the honors!

We ended the day with a rather tired game of Ticket to Ride during which Tony slaughtered the rest of us.  No fun… actually lots of fun I just hate losing.  I far prefer being the one to slaughter everyone else, he just got the good routes this time 😦

Monday was by far the height of the awesomeness of our weekend, though.  Kirsten and I got up early (well, for me anyway) and headed out to the half off sale at Saver’s… thankfully i found some black and white!  Then, Matt and I headed out to St Paul to see the King Tut exhibit!!!

It was A-mazing!  I still am in awe.  I’ve always been fascinated by the ancient Eygptians, and after seeing so many artifacts close up, knowing that they were around 3500 years old and still going strong, I am blown away.

We tried to hit up an Itialian place for lunch near the museum, but it was closed for the holiday, so we ended up at the Uptown Diner…. and we will be having to go back many times until we have, in fact, tried everything on the menu!

We got a burger with sweet potato tater tots!!!

Let’s just say those fried, yet fluffy puffs of sweet potato were amazing… then we dipped them in maple syrup, and I thought I died.  Seriously.  WOW.  We opted for splitting the burger so we could try this:

An apple crisp waffle.  Oh, yum!  We devoured it… down to the last bite

After some time has passed, I think I can now safely say that I prefer pancakes to waffles.  It’s a fact.  I don’t know why.  After lunch, we packed up our stuff and headed south… to Ikea!

and we ended up with some cool stuff… two bath mats, some organizers for Matt’s woodworking magazines, a plastic bag organizer, a silicon whisk/spatula set (for .99 cents), and some bag clips…. all for the grand total of $18!  Not to mention, I got some great idea for the future!

We seriously got on the road then, stopping in Medford for some more work clothes hunting, and to met up with a friend who was in Iowa from MSP for the weekend to have ice cream, and meet her bf (whom we enjoyed).

The last stop of our journey was a Denny’s, where I got this sweet treat for a mere $4….

In case you are wondering… it’s a fried cheese sandwich… a grilled cheese with four mozzarella sticks in the middle.  It was weird, and it was good!

We are now safely home, I have had the entire day off… I slept in AND took a nap, and am wishing that Matt was home so I could go to bed.  But, truth be told, there is nothing better than getting to spend a few days with really good friends!!!

After having realized this about myself, how about you:  pancakes, waffles, or french toast???


The Wife of My Husband’s Dreams…

If you have ever been one of those lucky people to live with me or, better yet, one of the lucky few to have shared an actual bedroom with me, you can testify without a shadow of a doubt that the following statement is true:

I am a messy.  I leave my stuff laying around.  And, it takes me a long time for it to bother me enough to DO something about it.

The greatest perpetrator in this throughout history is my laundry:  there is a pile system, and the hamper.  Often times I have a few pairs of semi-clean jeans/work pants that have been worn once, and will be worn again before washing.  There is the stack of things that came off of hangers, and were tried on but rejected for public viewing.  Usually the pjs are thrown somewhere near the bed.  Last but not least:  there is the hamper which houses the dirty laundry.

In recent days… namely the last year and a half, the laundry is much more controlled than it ever has been thanks to a few closet hooks, and a very small bedroom.  However, I have managed to spread myself throughout the entire 876 square feet of our home.  There is now the lunch bag slash purse slash whatever stuff I take to work and bring home pile.  Then, there is the pile of currently reading library books… and let’s be honest, sometimes there are two of those piles!  There is the constant rotation of dirty dishes in the kitchen from various cooking projects.  An assortment of acrylic paints and sponge brushes and various widths of painter’s tape in the basement.  The puzzle of Cinderella’s castle I started putting together, but haven’t had much of a life enough to finish in the past month….  I think you get the picture.

Enter my dearly beloved husband into my life:  he greatly appreciates a clutter-free and clean home, and was able to maintain said cleanliness in his many years as a bachelor.  For him, a clutter free home means he can be at peace, he can relax, he can rest.  If he comes home and sees clutter or messies, he just thinks of the stuff that he needs to do.

Enter my Mosaic training classes this month.

A couple weeks ago, I had a safety class.  They talked about how when we have someone living with us it is important to provide them a clean, safe environment.  This means no clutter, a clean toilet, organized book piles, and so on, and so forth.  This is good, this makes sense.  IT ALSO FREAKS ME OUT!!!  Yes, I have an amazingly wonderful husband who will be a great help to me, but the truth is:  I got to get my act together!!!!

In short, I was expressing my great anguish over the subject at small group a couple weeks ago, my dear, dear friend chuckled and said, “Well, now Matt will have the wife of his dreams.”  AGH!  SO TRUE!

Enter my newest acquisition:  Martha Stweart’s Homekeeping Handbook.  I checked it out at the library last week, and ordered me a copy today on amazon.  My first goal, aim, challenge in becoming the wife of my husband’s dreams lies in Martha’s six things to do everyday checklist:

  • Make the bed
  • Manage clutter
  • Sort the mail
  • Clean as you cook
  • Wipe up spills when they’re fresh
  • Sweep the kitchen floor.

I can’t say that I’ve become accomplished at these tasks, but have surprisingly come a long way!!!  The thing that I am most amazed with is cleaning up spills when they happen:  namely on the stove top!  It’s SO easy to keep the stove top clean now 🙂  I love it!

Stay tuned, who knows what is going to happen as I dig deeper into Martha’s world of housekeeping!!


Custom Painting

In case you didn’t know, the hubs and I have been making and selling Kubb sets all summer.  It’s be kinda fun to tell you the truth, especially since we added a custom option to the mix!

I know I’ve already bragged a little about this one, but thought I throw it out there to show off anyways 🙂

A few weeks ago we got an order for a customized Nebraska Cornhusker set.  I know, Matt was seriously sad that A.  Someone was going to play with it and ruin it’s sheer perfection and B.  That we had to put it in a box and ship it to Elkhorn, NE.

Here’s the point where I am sure you are asking yourself, “Why in the world are those casting pins yellow?”

Well, you see:  I hand painted each of those six babies to look like ears of sweet corn.  Yeah, I know…. it took I LONG time.  Let’s just say, I spent the better part of a day off figuring it out and watching Netflix on the Wii!!!

I’d have to say that my favorite piece is the King:  using a Nebraska football helmet as inspirations, we went to the white & red look

All in all, I’d have to say that I’m surprised how much I enjoy these painting adventures!  Right now, I’m working on a Bears vx Packers for the Super Bowl trophy kinda thing for someone up in Minnesota.  He’s a Bears fan.  Why he lives in Viking territory is beyond me.

We sell our lovely creations at our Etsy shop:  http://www.etsy.com/shop/clauscreations


Holding Pattern

hold·ing pat·tern, noun

1. The flight path maintained by an aircraft awaiting permission to land.

2. A state or period of no progress or change

Our life is in a seemingly unending holding pattern right now.  It started the night of my birthday, back in March.  Matt came home from work and told me that one of his supervisors had asked him what he thought about doing the host home program at Mosaic.

In short, this means that we would have an adult with an intellectual disability move into our home, and it would become Matt’s full time job to provide care for this individual.  We had known about the host home program before that night, had talked about it, and decided that someday we’d like to be a part of something like that.  I never would have guessed that ‘someday’ would be so soon.

We went down to the Mosaic office later that week to get an informational packet, and sat down to read it through.  Eventually, we filled out an application.  Then, we waited about six weeks to attend an informational session.  Matt waited another two to have an interview.  We waited another month to have a home visit, and that was a month ago now.  Are you catching a theme here???

Thankfully, this month has been a month of action, if you can call it that.  I am required to go through Mosaic’s New Employee Orientation so that I am as trained as Matt is in policy, procedure, and the like.  So, every Monday this month I have sacrificed my day off for the greater good.  It has been rough to say the least, but I have been filled with such excitement about what our future holds in store for us!!!  There is not a day goes by that I don’t feel like we have been called to go down this road, a road that Jesus Himself would be walking down if He were here in flesh and blood.

As I see the end of my training in sight, I have begun to dread the holding pattern we have to maintain….  all there is left to do is be patient and wait until we are matched with the right person.  We have no idea when we are going to get a call to meet with someone!  I pray hard, and I pray often.  I desperately hope it will be soon!


Quick-e’s

Now for a list of random life happenings……

  • I bought 4 pounds of strawberries at Fareway today… they were on SALE $1.48/lb and I haven’t seen or tasted such delicious berries in such a LONG TIME!!!
  • This morning Matt & I decided that we were going to drive efficiently, and use the least amount of gas possible:  in the name of doing a favor for a friend, we managed to hit 3 of the 4 corners of the Des Moines metro area!
  • Our tour started out at the Retro Diner in West Glenn, for breakfast:  I had a Groupon and it was DELICIOUS!
  • In the midst of our driving, we got a lot of time to talk, and some time to listen to the Dave Ramsey Show on the radio.
  • I decided that I might prefer Lowe’s to Menard’s…. though the jury is still out on that one.  I just thought everyone was super helpful at Lowe’s, and I loved it!
  • I came home from small group tonight to find Matt in the garage working on the building the square frames for our garden 🙂  And, the accompanying rabbit fence!
  • When he is gone, I either watch TV or sleep in, though to my credit there isn’t anything better than sleep to be going on at 7:30 AM on a Sunday.
  • While walking the aisles at one of the home improvement stores today, I heard a little girl talking to her dad, “Daddy, I think you need to buy me a new swing set.”  To which Dad replies, “Honey, your swing set is just a little broken.”  “Well, then Daddy I think you NEED to FIX IT.”
  • HA!!!!!  Daddy do list?  LOVED it.