Trail Mix (G.O.R.P)

We are headed to Beaver Creek, CO in a few days and it got me thinking about trail mix.  This delightful little snack has an unbelievable amount of real estate in my pantry.  I love it because there are so many creative things you can do with it.  It travels anywhere.  It keeps for a long time.  It’s healthy– usually– but it doesn’t have to be.  It can be given as a gift for just about any occasion: new house, new baby, Christmas, Thanksgiving, hospital visits, school lunches and party treats.  You can almost always have the ingredients on hand to make some.  It’s so quick, it’s so yummy and it’s so personalizeable.  (My college age cousin loves to raid our pantry and use whatever we can find to whip up a batch to take back to school with him.)  Plus, there are adorable ways to wrap it- put it in a clear treat bag, tie with cute ribbon, add a love tag and viola– fabulous homemade gift.  I love the endlessness of possibilities.  Ahhhhhhh……

It is quite the topic of conversation in our house too.  For some reason we have had lots of experiences in our married life that relate back to trail mix and some seriously funny inside stories to go with it.  One of the funniest ones Big A and I love to talk about is this and I am not embellishing it.

Several years ago we were at Disney Worlds’ Magic Kingdom.  (some of the most fun we’ve ever had is watching other families who have traveled from everywhere “Do Disney”).  So we are sitting and waiting in a little cove waiting for Belle’s Story Time to begin and this mom and dad beside us whip out what we now call “Disney Trail Mix.”  Please believe this.  Disney Trail Mix consists of:  mini snickers bars, chocolate chip teddy grahams, peanut m&m’s, and fruit loops.  I am dead serious. All mixed together in a tupperware.   Some of you are saying, “Ya? So?”

Some people call trail mix G.O.R.P.  Is that only in the East?  Growing up in Texas, I never heard G.O.R.P. in my life.  But I found out it stands for Good Ole Raisins and Peanuts.  Just a little but of trivia for those of you who never knew and/or never cared to know that.  I’m probably the only one who didn’t know it though.

Here are some ingredients you can keep stocked in your pantry for making trail mix anytime:

Any kind of nut you like:  cashew, almond, walnut, peanut, pistachio, macadamia

Sunflower seeds or roasted pumpkin seeds

Any dried fruit you like:  raisins, cranberries, cherries, apricots, apples.  The grocery store is full of great options now.

Pretzels

Chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, cinnamon chips, white chocolate chips

Goldfish

Cereals

Mini Fig Newtons, marshmallows, corn nuts, potato stix, popcorn, mini vanilla wafers, graham sticks….

Pretty much any ingredient that is bite size.

This is my favorite combo.  Took it with us to the hospital everytime.  Salted cashews, sunflower seeds, semi sweet choco chips, dried cranberries.  Yum!

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Biotin

Have you ever heard of Biotin?  It is an amazing little vitamin (in the vitamin B category) that I started taking a couple of years ago– it promotes the growth of hair and nails.  I’ve got a seriously weak hair and nail gene so this was a huge discovery.  The fact that I was born with thin hair coupled with the fact that after each baby I was practically bald six months after delivery due to hair loss, makes this a miracle pill in my book.

By the way, do you take vitamins?  I didn’t use to but now I do and here is what I’ve narrowed it down to for me.  (surely there will be additions as the years go on) Do tell what you take and why?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biotin

1 women’s multi

2 fiber

1 biotin

2 calcium

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Blogging everyday is like a full time job…

and I ain’t gettin paid.

So, I didn’t realize that doing a post every day was going to be an absolute whip.  Took a wee little break (sorry  more like two weeks).  Probably not going to post every day like I originally thought, but I am going to get to it as often as I can.  Leaving today to find a house for us to rent in FL, so hopefully I’ll get back to it on Monday.  Stay tuned…..

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This World Is Not My Home

Do y’all know this Hymm?  It was one of my all-time childhood favorites and for some reason it came back into my head just the other day.  Now I’m singing it all the time.  I’m writing about it today because I cannot stop thinking about it.

James 4:14 says, “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.”

It’s true.  This world is not our home.  We are just passing through.  And our time is so short.   What are we doing with our time?

Last night Big A and I were enjoying some quiet after the boys went to sleep.  This is how our conversation went:

Me:  I wanna be something.

Big A:  You are something

Me:  I wanna be more.

Big A: Did you know someday you will be all you were made to be?  You will be exactly what God made you to be.

Me: Ok smarty pants. (not really, i just added this part so you could hear what was in my head at the time)

Without analyzing my weirdness too much, let’s just skip ahead to what Big A said.  First, I pray my daughters meet and marry a man that says that to them someday.  And second, isnt that so amazing to think about.  Someday, after Jesus comes back, we will be restored to our original selves.  To what we would have been without sin.  Astounding.  Perfect.

I found the lyrics to the song and I am pasting them below:

This World Is Not My Home

Verse 1:
This world is not my home, I’m just a passing thru,
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue;
The angels beckon me from Heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

Chorus:
O Lord, you know I have no friend like you,
If Heaven’s not my home, then Lord what will I do?
The angels beckon me from Heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

Verse 2:
They’re all expecting me, and that’s one thing I know.
My Savior pardoned me and now I onward go;
I know He’ll take me thru tho I am weak and poor,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

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They Gawn

to summer camp that is.  Left the house at 7:30am – drove the girls to camp five hours away. Got there at 1:30, made up their bunks, watched the swim test and drove home again.  Boys are going to our neighborhood camp each day….. soooo can you see the smile on my face through your monitor?   I am trying to suppress it…..  but it keeps coming back….  My list of stuff to do is long and undistinguished.  I may just be silent the entire week too.  Ahhhhhhhhhh………..

The whole situation is such a bitter sweet.  Have you ever heard of that book called something like, “Why do you love them so much when they are asleep?”  That is not the accurate title but it’s what I always think of when they leave for any extended time.  The thought goes something like this:  I thought I wanted them to go, but now it’s so quiet and I’m not sure what to do with myself.  Why don’t I feel this way when they are here?  Then I try to recall the feeling later when I am with them again so I won’t forget how much I wanted to be with them when they were gone.  Does that even make sense?

I’m sure time will fly.  Saturday will be here before you know it because that’s how it goes.  When they are gone, a week flies by.  But a summer week home, why does that seem to drag?

There really is lots to say about the whole experience of driving and dropping off kids to camp.  Though as a camper, I must say, I NEVER thought about any of it.  Here are some observations:

1.  I am morally opposed to eating at a gas station for lunch (and dinner).

2. 11 hours is a really long time to drive in one day- for one week.  Hope it’s worth it.

3. The amount of preparation that goes into a kid being away for a week is obscene.  10 underwear.  10 socks.  Label everything.  And camp nowadays — well it ain’t like it used to be.  Now there are theme nights- each kid has to have a different costume each night!!  That is 10 costumes for me to come up with and basically I don’t want to do it.  I told myself not to stress about it- just keep it old school and find stuff out of the dress up box that fits with whatever the theme is.  But this year one night is a 20’s costume and oddly enough we didn’t have any flapper dresses laying around.  So  I bought flapper dresses from a costume store- now you know what they are going to be for Halloween.  I told the girls they would just have to forgive me because they were born to me at a time when I realized I have a difficult time buying costumes for camp when there are so many starving and homeless children in the world.   I know I’m a killjoy.

4. The other parents dropping off are as bewildered as you and thinking:  Did I forget anything they need?  I kinda want to hide in their gigantic duffle bag and stay  here.  It is really hot at camp-how did I do this?   Are they going to make friends?  Are they going to fit in?  Will they be home sick?  The college kids that run this place seem really young.  But I thought I was so old when I was that age, so I guess it’s ok.

Hoping this is blurry because I was zooming from about 100 yards away. More likely the reason is I am not a good photog.

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The Line Between Love and Hate

It is so so fine.  Sometimes so fine I can’t even see it.  Never was this more clear to me than when Big A tried to tell me how to breastfeed.  This won’t come as a surprise to many of you but he was convinced the “football hold” was the way to go.  (Please — if you don’t know what the football hold is with regards to breastfeeding you must educate yourself because you might find it to be as hilarious a name as I did.)  I politely (probably not the way he remembers it) asked him to leave the hospital room while I sweated it out by myself – uncoached.  (Breastfeeding is a whole other topic that I probably can’t go into much more here.  Just suffice it to say that in my head I have a created a group entitled BA.  That’s Breastfeeders Anonymous.  At each meeting you have to say out loud:  “I tried it.  Didn’t like it.  Baby cried all the time.  I quit.  And I have guilt.”  Then everyone in your support group says back to you in unison, “It’s ok.  So did we.  Our kids are all alive and healthy and actually doing well in school.  I wasn’t breastfed and I’m a fully functioning adult.  It’s the longevity of nutrition that counts. You would have had a wet nurse.”)

Back to the topic at hand:  the line also becomes blurred when we argue over the air conditioning in the car.  And when deciding where to eat dinner, where to go on a date when the clock is ticking, when he accidentally drops his arm on me in the middle of the night and gives me a black eye, hmmmmmm anything else? Oh yes, when we are traveling together and he wants to chillax and I’m ready to explore.  That just about covers it.

The flip side is we agree on almost everything: music, politics, God, parenting, travel, movies.

Do you want to know what I really call Big A on occasion?  Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde.  To me it is the perfect illustration, the man is like two people in one body.   Let me give you some hard evidence.  His favorite thing to do is play sports/fish and yet he loves musicals.  He is completely masculine and yet can decorate an easter egg better than any woman I’ve ever known.  He finished medical school yet loves to do nothing more than anything.  He’s the brains behind this operation (or so I tell him) but I know more about pediatrics than he does.  He is a doctor but doesn’t believe in anything healthy– that makes for fun conversation.  It is amazingly difficult to figure him out.

But I will say this.  We were made for each other.  God has always known it would be him and me.  I feel blessed to have met him at a young age.  Our story is a long and predictable one of meeting young and becoming best friends.  Boy loves girl, girl rejects boy, girl realizes she loves boy, boy says forget you, girl begs for boy, boy finally gives in.  With lots of drama mixed in.  That’s just the shortened version.  Then began the toughing it out long distance at different schools, getting married after what seemed like eternity, working odd jobs to make ends meet when we first got married, I began begging for kids, got my way and now there’s lots.

Big A says if I died he could never marry again because there’s no way he could pull the wool over another girl’s eyes.  Now that’s funny.  Of course I could never marry again, because I don’t think there is a man alive who could put up with my bi-polar mood swings.  Whatever Michele Duggar has or doesn’t have running through her veins that keeps her that calm, patient, sweet, and mild mannered of a mom/wife well I’ve either got 10 x’s what she has or I’m missing it all together.

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Honey For A Child’s Heart

This is a great resource book for parents and grandparents.  The author makes book recommendations for kids of all different ages and stages and talks a lot about the importance of reading in general.  We have used it so much over the years to help us find great age appropriate and classic books for our kids.  Take it with you to the library or book store, use it when shopping for Christmas or birthday gifts or give it as a gift at the next baby shower.

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