Thursday, November 26, 2009

Second Annual A to Z Thanksgiving Giveaway!

For Thanksgiving, let's play a little game, one we played around the Thanksgiving table when I was a kid. At the end of this post I'll name something starting with an "A" that I'm thankful for. If you're the first to comment, tell us something you're thankful for that starts with an "B." Second comment, something starting with a "C." (I'm pretty sure you're smart enough to figure out the remaining 23 steps!)

Feel free to post as many times as you'd like, but don't post twice in a row. Traffic might be low today since it's a holiday. Can we get to "Z" before the day is through? Let's try!

If you cross-post and more than one person uses the same letter, no problem--it's a good day to be extra-thankful.

And to sweeten the deal...whoever completes our alphabet with "Z" will get some sort of yummy home-baked treat from me. I'll contact you to find out what you'd like. (Be sure I have a way to get in touch with you.)

Remember, no posting twice in a row. I'll plan to come on and post a "Y" comment so that anyone is free to post "Z."

Let's get started!

A: I'm thankful for...
Awesome friends, both in-person and virtual. Happy Thanksgiving to my blog buddies!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

We're outta here!

We're leaving this morning to visit various family members, and we'll be back on Sunday. I'll probably take a bit of time off from blogging. I hope you enjoy spending time with your loved ones!

But tomorrow there will be a blog post. It's the second annual A to Z Thanksgiving Giveaway! Click to read about last year's contest, and be sure to come back tomorrow to participate!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I am so excited!

I've decided what I want for Christmas.

Some time ago, I blogged about how I kind of wish my old mixer would break so that I could buy a Kitchen Aid.

Well, I'm tired of waiting. Sunbeam doesn't make the fanciest mixers in the world, but boy do they last. And last. And last. Far longer than I want them to. (In January we're celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary...and the Sunbeam's 10th birthday!) So come Christmas, I'll be retiring the old mixer.

But I've decided against the Kitchen Aid. Turns out there's a mixer that some people like even more. So in about a month, I will be welcoming this beauty into my home:

It's a Cuisinart. Isn't it pretty? One of the big benefits of the Cuisinart is that it has a three-year warranty (five years for the motor!) Kitchen Aids only have one year warranties. (One!)

Hopefully this beautiful mixer will still be going strong when The Engineer and I celebrate our 20th anniversary!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday Micro: Note to self

Dear Self,

Your children are very creative and like to use their shirts for many things. In addition to providing protection against wind and cold, these multipurpose pieces of fabric are used as bibs, napkins, and Kleenex.

So, Self, stop buying your kids white shirts.

The Practical Half(?) of Your Brain

Sunday, November 22, 2009

My sense of humor may not be shared by our insurance company

Six months ago we had a big hail storm. Since then, many of our neighbors have had their roofs replaced. We finally took the hint and got ours looked at and, sure enough, it needs to be replaced too. It's not leaking, but it's beat up enough that we could have problems with it later. It's covered by insurance, so we don't really mind this too much.

Friday they dropped off the materials; the work will be done Monday.


It rained and rained and rained Friday. And it struck me just how funny it would be if we had another big hail storm struck, as that material sat on our driveway.

I recognize that my insurance company might not agree about how funny that would be. But I think I'd get a giggle out of it.

I'm not sure what this says about me....

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Six Word Saturday!

It's that time again...Six Word Saturday! To find out more about 6WS and to participate, check out Call Me Cate's peachy blog by clicking the button below.

My words:

I haven't started my Christmas shopping.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Chickie and Zoodle

When Zoodle was born, we didn't think he looked like Chickie had looked as a baby. People have often commented that she looks like me, and he looks like The Engineer, so it made sense that they didn't look that much alike.

Recently, though, I've seen old pictures of Chickie, and it's struck me--Zoodle looks a lot like she did at his age. I dug up an old photo of her from when she was about the age Zoodle is now. What do you think?

Photobucket Photobucket

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thank you

It's been a busy day (writing this on Wednesday night), so I'll keep this short.

Thank you to those of you who commented yesterday (and who emailed me privately) with tips on how to get out the door easier, and tips on how to relax and not stress about it so much! I'm already starting to implement various suggestions. (Before I go to bed tonight I'm going to get those sippy cups ready for tomorrow!) You all really came through for me. Thank you.

And if you have trouble getting yourself and your kids out the door too, be sure to read all the comments that were left yesterday. Hopefully the advice will help you as much as I think it's going to help me.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Help me!

Chickie will be four years old in less than two months. Zoodle is 19 months old. There are a lot of things that aren't fun about taking care of kids this age. I mean, I have to deal with snot and poop and sleep deprivation.

But you know what? I can handle all that. What I can't seem to get a hang of is how to get out of the house.

I get so frustrated trying to get myself and two kids out of the house--whether we're going to the grocery store, a playdate, or church. I thought of saying "or the library," but we haven't been there for months. Maybe if I didn't get so stressed out getting them out of the house, we'd go back!

There's just so much to do. I have to make sure sippy cups are found and full and in the diaper bag. I need to check the stock of diapers in the diaper bag. Between the three of us, we have to put on six socks and six shoes. Chickie should go potty whether she wants to or not, and Zoodle loves to confront me with a poopy diaper just as we're about to head out the door. On a good day, I have coffee or water for myself, and on a really good day I've straightened my hair and put on makeup. I've got to get two kids in their carseats, and make sure I have forgotten the diaper bag and my purse. After the kids are strapped in, I run back in the house, turn the burglar alarm off, grab whatever I've forgotten (shopping list, coffee, etc.), turn the alarm back on, and get in the car to back out. Sometimes I'm able to use our garage door opener to close the door; often lately it hasn't worked and I have to back out of the car to pull the manual release cord, and close the door.

So I end up leaving 15 minutes (or 30 minutes, or an hour) later than I expected, and by the time we're on the road I've often worked myself into an anxious mess.

So, super moms (or normal moms who have just figured out this part of parenting)--how do you do it? How do you get out of the house in an efficient, timely fashion, without going nuts? You may save my sanity with your advice, so thank you in advance.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Coolest cup around

Isn't this a pretty coffee cup?

non-paper cup's not paper! It's the "Non-paper cup" from the store World Market (called "Cost Plus" in some areas.)

The sleeve and top are both flexible silicone.

silicone lid non-paper cup

The cup itself is porcelain.

porcelain non-paper cup

My only complaint so far? It's hard to get lipstick off the silicone lid. But I can deal with that.

Starbucks gives a 10 cent discount for bringing in your own cup. (This is 16 ounce, or grande-sized, though I'm sure you could have them partially fill it if you'd prefer a tall-sized drink.) And if the thought of a dime discount isn't enough to convince you, just think of the warm, fuzzy feeling you get from helping the environment. (Or is that warm, fuzzy feeling from my nonfat decaf latte with two pumps of peppermint? Either way, it's nice.)

And if you don't want to buy your own super-cool mug (but why wouldn't you?!) ask for a real mug next time you're at Starbucks. If you're staying there to enjoy your drink, you can forego the paper cup and use the real thing. You won't get a discount--but they'll wash the mug for you.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Monday Micro: My little vintners

Chickie and Zoodle like to drink grape juice. (Well, it's really 80% water, 20% juice.) Unfortunately, they tend to put their sippy cups down and forget about them.

So occasionally Chickie finds an old sippy (with the toys, in her bedroom, etc.), and she takes a drink from it. She gets a cute, disgusted look on her face, and proclaims, "Mommy, this doesn't taste good!"

So I take it, unscrew the cup, and smell it, and am reminded that, yep...

Grape juice + Time = WINE.

I'm so proud of my little vintners...and very glad that so far they haven't acquired a taste for their product.

P.S. This is Post #600 for me. Yippee!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Accidental volunteer

Thursday I got an email from Kenny, our pastor, about a Saturday morning men's breakfast. I wondered why exactly I was on the list because, well, I'm not a man. Then at the end of the email, he said, "Women, please encourage the men in your life to get involved. :)" So Friday I asked The Engineer if he was going, and he confirmed that he was, but that he hadn't RSVP'd. I responded to Kenny's email,

Kenny--Sorry for the late RSVP but The Engineer WILL be there. Do you want me to prepare any food?

I was thinking maybe I could quickly whip up some muffins or something. Then I got Kenny's reply,

Hey Beth, that would be great if you want to prepare the food!

Um, wait a minute, I thought. Did I just accidentally volunteer to make all the food? For a breakfast less than 24 hours from now? Apparently so.

I'm sure I could have graciously clarified my offer, but Kenny let me know that only five guys had RSVP'd, and there would probably be a couple of extra. Yeah, I thought, I can make food for five or 10 guys.

So I sent The Engineer to the grocery store on his way home from work. I made some dough for cinnamon rolls, let it rise, and refrigerated it. I was actually excited; if I'm going to accidentally volunteer for something, it might as well be something I enjoy, like cooking.

There was just one problem. I was in the middle of a novel that had me spellbound--one of those I really didn't want to put down. I wanted to spend my evening reading.

So I did. As I assembled cinnamon rolls Friday night, and made Green chili egg casserole Saturday morning, I propped the book open on the countertop and multi-tasked a bit. And I didn't even substitute salt for sugar or make any other distracted mistakes. Everything turned out good.

Cooking and reading...two things I love to do. Who knew how easy it would be to do them at the same time? I hope all my future accidental volunteering experiences are just as satisfying as this one was.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Six Word Saturday!

It's that time again...Six Word Saturday! To find out more about 6WS and to participate, check out Call Me Cate's peachy blog by clicking the button below.

My words (and I'm cheating by doing TWO six-word statements this week):

Up early with Zoodle. (My turn.)
Sunrise makes early rising worth it.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Zoodle's car noises (video)

Zoodle's really into car sounds these days. Or in this case, train sounds. Which are remarkably similar to car sounds. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Well, maybe there WAS a silver lining

Yesterday I posted about Tuesday's frustrating nap time and said there was nothing good about that situation. I wrote that in the afternoon, and by the evening I was rethinking it.

Because of the naptime drama, Zoodle was extra-tired and willingly went to bed before 7:00 Tuesday. I decided it would be a good time to spend some quality time with Chickie. I got out her stepladder and the mixer, and we made cookies.

It was good to spend that time with Chickie.

And they were great cookies.

I'd say that's a pretty good silver lining to Zoodle's naptime thundercloud!

Chunky Kisses Cookies

Want the recipe?

Chunky Kisses Cookies

1 cup butter (unsalted, softened)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups flour
1 1/2 cups chopped* Hershey's Kisses, any variety (I used Mint Truffle)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix softened butter, brown sugar, and white sugar--cream together very well.
3. Add egg and vanilla; mix well.
4. As mixer is turning, slowly add baking soda and salt, and mix well.
5. Add flour, 1/2 cup at a time, mixing well.
6. Turn off mixer and very gently fold chopped Kisses into batter.
7. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheets.
8. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until edges are barely beginning to brown. Cool on wire rack.

*Note: To chop Kisses, first chop the tip (top 1/4 inch) off. Then cut the bottom part into quarters.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I didn't like it when...


I didn't like it when Zoodle got up at 5:45 yesterday morning.
But I did like when he went down easily for his nap by 11:30.

I didn't like it when I realized Chickie might have a little cold.
But I did like that she was drowsy enough to cuddle, then sleep, with me during naptime.

I didn't like it when I stepped in dog poop in the back yard.
But I did like that the weather was nice enough for us to play outside.

I didn't like it when the dog barked at the Fed/Ex truck and woke up Zoodle and me from our naps too early, and Zoodle proceeded to cry hysterically from tired frustration for nearly an hour (with occasional cuddles from me) before he stopped crying but didn't go back to sleep.
But I did like...
Oh, forget this Pollyanna crap. There was nothing good about that.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

When did I become so domestic?

My kids ate homemade yogurt and homemade bread at dinner last night. As I type this, there's milk turning into yogurt in the yogurt maker, and granola in the CrockPot. At some point in the evening, I found myself asking (again), "When did I become so domestic?"

I've enjoyed cooking for a long time, but I think I really got into it after we moved two years ago. Our first home was built in 1973, and it had a small kitchen that was not open to the living room. Not only did I have limited cabinet space, I was also very much alone in that kitchen.

Our home now has a spacious kitchen with plenty of space, and it's open to the living room. I can talk to The Engineer, watch the kids, and even watch TV while I cook and clean up.

It's interesting, though. I think about the cooking and baking I do, and I consider that "domestic"--but my house is usually not as clean as it "should" be. I'm not much of a decorator. I rarely sew. There are a lot of "domestic" activities I just don't care for.

And I think that's what it comes down to. I love cooking. That's why I do it a lot. Not because I "should." Often we women compare ourselves to the women around us. I think, "Wow, so-and-so keeps her house so clean!" Or, "Could I ever end up with a house as beautifully decorated as hers?" Or, "That mom does so many amazing crafts with her children!"

And I bet some of those moms look at me and think, "Oh, I don't know how she spends so much time in the kitchen; should I be more like that?"

But when it comes down to it, no one can do it all. So I figure, whether you love cooking, cleaning, sewing, working in an office, doing crafts with your children, or gardening, do it joyfully! Do it exuberantly!

And let's not beat ourselves up for not doing everything.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Monday Micro: Five things I learned this weekend

1. The key to getting small children to stay still at Starbucks long enough for Mommy and Daddy to enjoy their coffee: A creme (coffee-free) Frappuccino.

2. It's hard to have an appropriate level of mercy for a dog with the stomach flu, when he wakes you up at 5 a.m. as he loses his dinner on the carpet.

3. Eavesdropping on your daughter's Sunday School class as she sings (well, yells) Jesus Loves Me? It may hurt Mommy's ears, but it also warms Mommy's heart.

4. If you let your kids sleep way too long during nap time, it will be hard to get them to bed later in the evening. But if it gives you the opportunity to finish a novel during said nap time, it's totally worth it.

5. A guy who will clean up the living room and put both kids to bed while Mom does some Sunday evening grocery shopping? That guy is worth keeping around.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

It's more important to stay on the path...

...than to get to the destination quickly.

I'm two weeks into my training in the Couch-to-5K program. Each week of training consists of three identical workouts (see here.) I'm working out on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

Yesterday instead of walking/jogging around the neighborhood, as I usually do, I exited the subdivision and headed northeast, through another neighborhood, through some parking lots...and to Starbucks. The decaf iced peppermint mocha was a sweet reward for my workout! The Engineer and the kids drove to meet me there so I could ride home with them.

Yesterday's workout was hard, though. At the end of Week 1, I felt ready to start Week 2. It wasn't the same yesterday. I was challenged enough that I don't want to be more challenged on Monday. So I've decided to repeat Week 2.

I think it's far more important for me to continue consistently training, than for me to reach the end of the training in the allotted nine weeks. If it takes 10, or 12, or 14 weeks, that's long as I've kept with it! I'd far prefer to be getting consistent workouts (including repeating the difficult ones) than to get discouraged and quit. Getting in shape is the primary goal; it's okay if the secondary goal of being able to run three miles (without feeling like I'm dying) takes awhile.

I'm blogging briefly each day that I work out, as a way to keep track of it, and to share my progress. You can check that out here: C. Beth Run.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Six Word Saturday!

It's that time again...Six Word Saturday! To find out more about 6WS and to participate, check out Call Me Cate's sixtacular blog by clicking the button below.

My words...

Headed to Costco. (Hooray! Free samples!)

(I'm easy to please.)

Friday, November 6, 2009

And the winner is...

Thanks to trusty, we have a winner! The recipient of Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day is...

Commenter #2, Pixel Queen Photography (a.k.a. Sandi)! Congratulations, Sandi! Second comment.... I guess the early bird gets the worm! (Or in this case, completely worm-free bread.)

Sandi said in her comment, "I love these recipes! I've never strayed from the basic Artisan recipe so I'd love to give a healthier version a whirl. Thanks for doing this :-)."

Now, if you didn't win, I'm very sorry. I guess you'll have to buy it. It may be the best $18.47 (current Amazon price) you've ever spent. And the original book, Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, is currently $16.37. Both retail for $27.99. (I love Amazon's prices!)

Thanks to everyone who entered!

A goat for Christmas? Or maybe a chicken?

I'm excited about something we're planning to be involved in, as a family, this year. I'll preface this by telling you I'm going to be writing about a Christian missions organization. I know that my readers have various religious beliefs, and I like to give a heads up if one of my posts is going to be specifically about faith.

A friend of mine from high school, Megan, and her husband Joel work for an organization called Gospel for Asia. GFA's goal is to share Jesus' love with people in Asia, by providing support for native missionaries, and by giving practical help to many Asian families.

I really appreciate that money donated for the work in Asia all goes to Asia. People like Megan and Joel, who work on the administrative side here in the U.S., raise all their financial support themselves.

They have a Christmas program that I think is so exciting! The GFA Christmas Catalog gives people the opportunity to purchase gifts that will help Asian families or missionaries in practical ways. Here are some examples:

Gifts to help impoverished Asian families:

  • A pair of rabbits: $11. Rabbits reproduce...well, like rabbits, so one pair can provide lots of food and income for a family.
  • Water buffalo: $460. From transportation, to plowing, to providing milk, a water buffalo can truly change an Asian family's lives.
  • BioSand water filter: $30. A village can have cleaner water and greater health, with this simple filter.
  • Jesus Well, $1000. A Jesus Well provides clean water, and an opportunity for missionaries to share about Jesus, the Living Water.
  • House: $5000. Many Asians have lost homes to natural disasters, and a simple, new home can be provided for $5000.
Gifts to help missionaries:
  • Tambourine: $5. A simple tambourine can be used by a missionary to play worship music.
  • Bicycle: $110. Many missionaries spend a lot of their time walking from village to village, and a bicycle allows them to travel much more quickly.
  • Church building: $11,000. In the U.S., $11,000 doesn't even cover the chairs at many churches! In India, it's enough money to build an entire church.
I'm not yet sure what we'll be giving, but I'm excited thinking about all the possibilities! There is a lot more at the website if you'd like to check it out here. And here is a short video (under three minutes) about a family who gave, and a family who received.

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me....

I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.

-Jesus, Matthew 25:35,40 (NIV)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Jokes from a 3-year-old

Chickie has just hit the age where she wants to tell jokes. Here was one she told me yesterday:

"Why does a chicken sit on eggs? Because it doesn't have a chair!"

I think she probably heard that joke on the PBS show Sid the Science Kid, which ends each episode with silly jokes.

The thing is, she knows it's funny, but she doesn't know why. She's determined, though, to make up her own jokes. They are funnier than the original...simply because they make no sense. Here is one she told me yesterday:

"Why does a truck sit on a sheep? Because it doesn't have a chair!"

She uses this formula over and over, and the punchline is always the same. And I always laugh at my 3-year-old comedienne-in-the-making.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Whole wheat flatbread pizza

Have you entered the Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day cookbook giveaway yet? I'll be choosing a winner randomly on Friday, so get over there and leave me a comment to enter.

To whet your appetite, I'd like to share a recipe. This is what we had for dinner last night (and a recipe I make frequently!)

whole wheat flatbread pizza

Whole Wheat Flatbread Pizza



Master Recipe dough from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day (Recipe here!)
Extra virgin olive oil

Tomato/pizza sauce, pesto, or alfredo sauce (I used Classico basil pesto, sold with pasta sauces)

Your pizza toppings of choice. (I used sun-dried tomatoes and artichoke hearts--both jarred; fresh spinach; and shredded mozzarella cheese.)


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. If using a baking stone (which is preferable), preheat for 20-30 minutes.

2. Make flatbread using the naan recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. (Recipe available here for free!) However, instead of ghee or butter, use 1 Tbsp or less extra virgin olive oil. Watch closely, as it's easy to burn the bread.

3. Spread sauce on flatbread, and cover with toppings.

4. Bake pizzas (on preheated stone, if available) until cheese is melted (browned if you'd like), about 6-8 minutes.

These pizzas are a hit in our house. The flatbread has a wonderful flavor and texture; we prefer it to traditional homemade pizza crust. I like that I can easily make individual pizzas with whatever ingredients each person wants. (Pickier kids can even have plain flatbread, or flatbread with cheese melted on top.) We are reducing cholesterol in our diets, so last night I only used a bit of cheese, and The Engineer still loved the flavor.

Now, get over to yesterday's post and enter the giveaway, and get your friends to enter if you'd like extra entries!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Review and GIVEAWAY! Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day

Last Christmas I got a book that changed the way I cook: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I think I "might" have mentioned it on this blog a "few" times.

I was not a bread baker until this book came into my life. (I know, "came into my life" sounds like I'm describing a love affair. And...I am.) From pizza to bagels to cinnamon rolls to braided challah to crusty white bread to breadsticks to...well, you get the picture...I've become a baker of really great bread, thanks to the techniques of Jeff Hertzberg, M.D. and Zoe Francois.

So of course I was a bit giddy with excitement when book #2 arrived in the mail last week.

Now, I admit I was a little nervous about Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I've had good luck with most of the recipes I've tried from the original book...but really never loved loved the 100% whole wheat recipe; it was just too dense for my taste. I was hoping that the second book would feature healthy recipes that also had a fantastic texture and flavor.

And so This book has really come through for me! Jeff and Zoe have come up with recipes that are healthy but also incredibly tasty.

Here's the idea behind both books: You make up a large, wet batch of dough. Stir it up, no kneading required. Let it rise, and then store it in the fridge. The wet dough is designed to be used over the course of up to two weeks (depending on the recipe.) On baking day, preparing a loaf takes less than five minutes (not including resting/rising time and baking time.) Please note many of these loaves are baked with steam, and you should not use an "oven-safe" glass dish for your water/steam. You can read about my explosive experience here.

The first HBin5 recipe I tried was Apples and Honey Whole Grain Challah (p. 262.) I love the challah recipe in the original book, so I thought this would be a good one to try. It's made with 5 cups whole wheat flour and 3 cups unbleached white flour, and has the added goodness of wheat germ and apple chunks. Instead of butter, I used canola oil (one of the options provided in the recipe.)


I made four of these turban-shaped loaves and later used the rest of the dough to make a good-sized loaf in a normal loaf pan. This bread was a hit. I brought it to a church function, and we all loved it. The apple chunks and eggs in the dough gave it a fantastic texture and flavor; it tastes decadent, even though it's healthy.

Next I tried the Master Recipe (p. 54, and also on the Artisan Bread in Five blog.) This is a very simple, very healthy recipe, with almost three times as much whole wheat flour as white flour. I made a seed mixture with poppy, white sesame, black sesame, and sunflower seeds to use as the topping (optional but awesome.)



Once again, it did not disappoint--it was great! The bread was not too dense, and the seed topping really gave it an incredible flavor. This would make a delicious sandwich loaf too. The book gives plenty of other uses for the master recipe dough, and I have a lot of it waiting for me in the fridge, so I'll be doing more experimenting this week.

I highly recommend both of these books. Each stands alone; you don't have to buy the first book to get great use out of the second. I'd suggest you buy both, but I'm, of course, a fanatic! Thanks to the authors' blog, you can try the Master Recipe and the Whole Grain Brioche recipe for free, as well as various recipes from the first book. But really, the blog doesn't replace the books; it supplements them. Nothing beats having over 200 recipes at your fingertips, along with the extra information and instructions in the books.

And now to the really exciting part...

St. Martin's Press has provided one copy of Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day for a lucky reader of C. Beth Blog!

Here's how you enter:

Leave a comment here telling why you'd like to have 100 healthy bread recipes. Please only leave ONE comment.

To get extra comments, spread the word about the giveaway (via Twitter, Facebook, your blog, word of mouth, billboards, etc.!) Make sure anyone who hears about it from you gives you credit in your comment! You'll get an extra entry for each person who mentions you in their entry.

I will randomly choose a winner on Friday, November 6. I'll close the comments before choosing a winner.

Open to anyone with a U.S. or Canadian mailing address. If you are from a different country, feel free to enter, and if it costs over US$10 to mail the book, I'll ask you to kindly cover the excess.

And remember, if you are entering because you heard about the contest from someone, be sure to mention them in your comment!

*Disclosure:While the publisher provided me with a free copy of this book for the giveaway, I was not compensated in any other way. I purchased my personal copies of both books.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Photo Extra: Ladies, don't you hate it...

...when it's the guys who get the great lashes?


Monday Micro: Fall back

It sure was easier than usual to get up yesterday morning, with the extra hour we had thanks to Daylight Savings Time. It was great--I stayed up a little bit late on Saturday without having a hard time waking up for church on Sunday.

So I've suggested to our pastor that we move the clock back an hour every Sunday. Sure, in a few months we'll be starting church in the middle of the night, but I'm pretty sure the extra sleep will be well worth it. If enough of us do this, we might even convince employers to join in. Who's up for it?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween costume photos

We make an interesting family....

A ski bum and a movie star...

ski bum movie star Halloween costume

movie star Halloween costume

(Somebody's been watching a little too much America's Next Top Model....)

A magical princess and (at the last minute) a rock star.

rock star magical princess Halloween costume kids

magical princess Halloween costume

child Halloween costume rock star abcd

I give Lindsay (home decorating blogger extraordinaire and former creator of boutique children's clothing) full credit for the "AB/CD" shirt idea!

Good thing Zoodle's monster costume got moldy. He wasn't exactly crazy about the hat.

monster Halloween costume

Despite the costume difficulty early in the day, it ended up being a treat-filled Halloween. (Well, there was that yellow jacket/wasp that got into my Diet Coke and not only freaked me out but also stung my mouth when I took a swig--but even that could have been much worse.) Hope your day was happy too!