Monday, November 14, 2011

Salty&Sweet Treats

Salty and Sweet.
Who would say this isn't a good thing?
 I have always been a fan of chocolate covered pretzels. I mean, what's not to love? Salty, crunchy, sweet. 
And chocolate and peanut butter? Psh, come on. That's a no brainer. 
And who doesn't love a great chocolate chip cookie?

Meet the result of combining these yummy things (and then some!).
Here' what you're looking at, friends. A chewy peanut butter cookie chock full of chocolate chips, pretzels, butterscotch chips, a touch of sea salt, and a little love.  :)

Go ahead tell me you don't want one.

Now head over to Still Waters on facebook and tell me what some of your fave treats are! 
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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Family Fun Day

 We recently had some exceptionally warm weather and took full advantage of it by spending the day outdoors.  This is my new family of 5. FIVE! Still can't believe it.
We had a picnic lunch, Bella picked out her own pumpkin, we did some shopping, and just enjoyed the time together out in the sun.
Here's me with my sweet little ones. Oh how I wish time would stand still and they could stay like this forever. 
 Bella did not take her responsibility of picking her own pumpkin lightly. Trust me, she thought long and hard about it.

 Xander and Kingston next to pumpkings much larger than they are. Oh how I love these tiny babies!

 My sweet Bella. So happy that it's finally her turn to play in the tunnel of hay :)
I love getting to spend great quality time with my family, and I am feeling so very thankful that these four amazing people are mine :)
My heart is full!
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Monday, November 7, 2011

Candy Bar Brownies

What do you do right after halloween when your house is filled with candy??

Make candy bar brownies, of course!
These are super simple and obviously delicious.
I mean, just look at that  fudgy brownie loaded with yummy candy. 
Are these calling your name yet?
 If you haven't gone completely overboard in your eating of halloween candy, you should still have the goodies you need to make these treats today!
Just whip up a batch of your favorite brownies and mix in 3/4 cup of your favorite chopped candy bars.  I used 3 Musketeers and Milky Ways. Pour batter in the pan and sprinkle a few more candy bars on top. (The sugar will start to caramelize in the oven making a yummy chewy mess of goodness.)
That's all folks! Told you they were easy.

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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Cinnamon Spice Muffins with Apple Pie Filling

You all know I love to cook and bake, and with fall in full force around here, I wanted to make something festive. I came up with this recipe and it turned out SO yummy!  Eat them for breakfast, a snack, or dessert. Either way they are the perfect fall treat! And as a bonus, while they are baking your house will smell amazing!
So grab a cute little baking assistant and get started!

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup milk

6 medium apples cored, peeled and chopped (a slightly tart apples works best)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup water
2 teaspoons cinnamon
dash cloves
dash nutmeg
1 Tbs cornstarch

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
splash of water

Add a spoonful of muffin batter into 16 lined muffin tins. Then add a spoonful of the cooled apple filling. Top with another spoonful of muffin batter until the tins are 3/4 full. Bake for 15 minutes at 400 degrees. Let cool most of the way on wire racks before adding glaze.
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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Time in The NICU

 Our boys spent three weeks in the NICU. I realize that for babies born at 32 weeks, a 3 week stay is excellent. But at the time it felt like forever. It's just not right to have just given birth and have to go home without your babies. As much as we ached for them to be home with us, we felt so incredibly thankful that they were alive and healthy. They needed this time in the hospital to make up for the time I couldn't give them inside.
They had excellent nurses and doctors. We felt so blessed that we could be confident in the care they were receiving in the hospital. 
 What a happy day this was, when we got to hold both of our babies together! It was so incredible having them in my arms. Even today, I can hardly believe this is really happening. These boys are truly miracles, and we are so blessed to call them ours!
(This was actually on daddy's birthday - what a sweet gift!)

This was a special moment right here. My grandpa holding his great grandson who we named after him. He is one of my favorite men in the world - such a great guy.
See these faces? Each time we went to see the boys in the NICU, they pretty much slept the whole time. When it was time for us to go, they almost always woke up and looked at us with their big sweet eyes, as if begging us to stay. My heart broke every time we walked out the door. It was nearly impossible to leave.

 This was another happy day. The day their feeding tubes came out! One step closer to coming home!
Finally, the big day was here. Our tiny babies were exactly three weeks old - I should have been 35 weeks pregnant - but instead we were bringing out little miracles HOME!!!
 I was giddy, I'm not gonna lie :)
 At last, Isabella could hold her baby brothers! She is in love with them.
Home never felt so good! Our prayers were answered. Our baby's were home. Our family was all together. Happy. And so thankful. This is BLISS.
Now the adventure of raising three kids under 3 begins :)
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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Day My Life Changed...Again

As I lay on the operating table I knew there was nothing left for me to do. It was all in God's hands now... as it had been all along. My heart was pounding, my thoughts were racing, and a constant strain of prayers were being sent up to heaven. 

Please protect my babies.

Please let them be ok.

Please please please. 

At 3:56 pm on August 21, 2011, my life changed.
 Our first son was born.  He was 2 months early but he came out crying. I don't think I ever felt such relief.  He had to be pretty healthy to let out a cry like that. Thank you Jesus!!!! 
At 3:58pm our second son came into this world; crying just like his brother! 
What a miracle! Both babies born this premature were breathing on their own and showed no signs of distress!
They were taken to the NICU where we were told they would stay for approximately a month - simply because they were so premature and they would have to master things like sucking, swallowing and breathing all at once, gaining weight, and maintaining their body temps. They had no major complications. Praise the Lord!

Welcome to the world Xander David!!

Welcome to the world Kingston Thomas!!


Brothers. 4lbs 7oz and 4lbs 3oz of perfection!

We are so happy and so thankful for our sweet tiny boys! Thank you to all who prayed for us. Our God is truly AWESOME.

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Monday, September 19, 2011

The Unexpected

It was a rough pregnancy - including the years it took us to conceive, the many invasive procedures, trips to the emergency room, the heartbreaking miscarriages, and the looming feeling of hopelessness that we  might not be able to have more children. 

But God is faithful and he chose to fulfill our hearts desire for more babies. 

We were elated to discover I was pregnant with twins! Through the painful OHSS, constant horrible "morning" sickness, bed rest, and pre-term labor, I rejoiced because these babies were MIRACLES. I relished every second of this pregnancy because I truly understood the value of these little lives and how I would not be able to carry these babies without God's hand of protection over us.

On August 19th I was admitted to the hospital. I was 32 weeks pregnant and in hard labor. I was given high doses of magnesium to try and slow the contractions and buy these boys a little more time inside. I was terrified when the doctor examined me and told me I was dilated, and every test performed showed that I would indeed deliver soon. 

 I was afraid for my babies lives. 

I made it this far, but it didn't seem like enough time. 

I felt like a failure. 

On Sunday, August 21, the drugs stopped working. My contractions got stronger and and were coming every minute. 
I went from enjoying a visit from my daughter in my hospital room one minute, to being rushed into surgery the next. 

I just prayed. 

Prayed for the lives of my sons. Prayed that they would defy the odds and be healthy. Prayed that I would be able to hold them very soon and look into their eyes and tell them how much I loved them.
As the surgeons began their work, my husband sat close to me holding my hand, telling me I did great and our babies would be ok.
I was fighting tears, wanting to believe him.

To be continued...
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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pregnancy Recap

 Since I've been such a lousy blogger this year I have a lot to catch you up on.
Here is a recap of my pregnancy with our twins.

 We had a fabulous Gender Reveal Party and discovered we were having 2 boys!

 At this point I went into labor (which, thankfully, the doctors were able to stop) and was put on bed rest.   Here's what my days looked like.

A few days after this picture was taken my pregnancy journey came to an end. 
To be continued...
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