Hospice House Memories & Gooey Chocolate Oatmeal Bars

This weekend was my Grandma’s 80th Birthday! It also would’ve been my Grandparents 61st wedding anniversary. How special to be invited to a Hospice House Balloon Launch the same day, in honor of loved ones lost this past year.  We … Continue reading

The Boys

  This is post 2 for today, be sure to head back 1 post for a delicious potato side dish!

Do you remember my best friend, Kasey?  You heard about our fun book signing adventure yesterday, and officially met her for the first time this past winter in her Top 10 of 2011 post.   Anyhow, between the two of us, we have an 8 1/2-year-old, a 6 1/2 year-old, 2-5 year olds, 2-3 year olds and an 18 month old.  Counting my miscarriages, one or BOTH of us, have been pregnant or nursing for the past 9 years! 🙂

  We hardly have a spare moment to get together with our 7 bundles of joy, and the good Lord knows the days of lunch dates to Applebee’s with kids are LONG gone, but we do plan play dates once in a while when all 7 of them are healthy at the same time.  (the odds are not in our favor)

  We recently went to Kasey’s beautiful farm for a fun date, and I snapped some pictures of our boys in their matching play clothes. 


  Kasey hasn’t gotten to see them yet, so I told her I’d post them to the blog.  This reminded me of an OOOOOLD picture we took, way back in the day when we only had 4 between us!  So today, I am going to share them all with you!!!!

  Our babies are growing up SO fast, but I am so glad they have each other to grow up with!!!!!!



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And let’s not forget a shot of our sweet girls, who LOOOOVE each other:

This was taken last August at Paxton’s birthday, and no we didn’t plan their outfits.  (we are just that good)  LOL  🙂


Kids back in the day:

Destiny with Kolby and Karter


Tylan & Karter


Karter and Ty



3 Musketeer’s Then:

Karter, Kolby & Tylan


3 Musketeer’s Now:


Precious friends!


Basement Birthday, MCC & Ree Makes 3: Part I

  This is a fully loaded blog post title if I ever saw one!!!!  And talk about photo-laden. Phew! Brace yourself people!

   We had a FABULOUS and crazy weekend! First up, the MCC Sale, which Dale and I have gone to every year since we were kids.  We both remember hanging out under the stage by the lake all day with our friends and can’t BELIEVE we don’t remember meeting.   The relief sale is so fun, and all proceeds go to help those in need across the globe…..I talked more about all of that last year.  We are always looking for fun places to go walk around as a family!

   And let’s not forget eating that yummy food! We don’t eat supper there, but do pack a few things to have snack time with their oh-so famous Cheese Curds and New Years Cookies!


  Destiny’s 2nd cousin, Brooklyn, got to join us.  Here are the photos from our evening:


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Freshly made Whoopie Pies. OH MY YUMMY GOODNESS……


I’ve apparently raised Paxton right, to have SUCH appreciation for these sorts of things……


But no, I wouldn’t let him have any. Come on now, he had already had a New Years Cookie!

Check out these 8 years olds, talking on the Brooklyn’s toy cell phone, like a bunch of teenagers…oh boy!


“Me too, Momma.  Take my picture while I do it just like big brother.”


  We had a picnic snack in the grassy area by the lake and stage, and the girls put on an AMAZING dance and singing show!


Playing with the zoom on my new lens….Guess it’s Ty’s turn for the toy cell phone?


Still playing with my lens. I present to you, “The many faces of Dale.”


Time to go, it’s getting late and our rule is “Always leave while everyone is still happy!”  🙂


Dale celebrated the big 3-1 on Saturday, and of course I made him his FAVORITE, Lemon Pudding Dessert!  That old post made me giggle when I re-read it.  (Might have been the image of me chasing a fox down the driveway in robe and slippers.)  AND, I couldn’t believe how much Paxton has changed, or my dessert photo!

  We partied it up down in the basement of my Uncle’s office, since there were HORRIBLE storms all through the mid-west, and we don’t have a storm shelter or basement!


This article, shared on facebook Saturday afternoon says:


“In an unusual move, national weather forecaster have issued an early warning, that conditions are ripe for violent tornadoes to rip through the Midwest this weekend. The expected weekend storms will stretch from Texas to Minnesota and could be a “high-end, life threatening event”. 

This is only the second time in history that the Storm Prediction Center issued a high-risk warning more than 24 hours in advance…….

The worst weather is expected to develop late Saturday afternoon between Oklahoma City and Salina, Kan., Other areas also could see severe storms with baseball-sized hail and winds of up to 70 mph, forecasters told the AP.”


Have you every tried to pack 6 people for an unknown amount of hours to go to a location with no toys or beds? This is what it looks like. IMG_7588

Plus a big bag of water and snacks. And a bean bag. And a trike. And the dog and cat. 

Ok, not the dog or cat, but the kids would’ve loved that. Oh, and in the end no bean bag or trike either. We quickly ran out of room in the Tahoe.

  While we were there with family, we went ahead and made the best of it, and had a mini celebration for Dale’s birthday!


We played Monkey in the Middle on the stairs and other games, too…..


The kids got to watch a movie, and I got some crafty stuff done.


 We were in that office basement from 5:30 to almost 10. At the time, 50 tornadoes had been sighted all around us, but all seemed to calm down after that, so we decided to head home.  Paxton snored the whole way, and as soon as we got there, Tylan crashed on the living room floor. Poor sleepy babies!  10:00 bedtime is A LOT different from the norm!


  Just as we unpacked the very full car, and had gotten all the kids down, a whole new batch of storms fired up SW of us.  At one point they thought they were coming to our town……GREAT, and we just got home, too!  We decided to keep an eye on things and just use our play closet for shelter if something changed.  Praise God, nothing happened!  {YAWN} That was a short night and a LOT of weather-channel watching!!!!! 

  The God we serve is such an AWESOME God!! Hearing reports of how tornadoes lifted just in time to miss entire towns…wow!  He hears our prayers and works in mysterious and wonderful ways!!  Now, while we are talking about praying, let’s pray we don’t have another night like that for a long time! Phew!  Over 100 tornadoes touched down all around us, over the course of the night and early hours of the morning. A nearby county reports an estimated total of $280 million in damage.  😦

   Windows Live Writer won’t let me post anymore, so the “Ree Makes 3” part of this post will be have to be continued…….

In the next post! 🙂


Kasey’s Top 10 for 2011

Hi….I am Tonya’s best friend, her BFF, the “Bestie”.  You know, like in the “Bestie Banana Bread” recipe Tonya shared with you from my kitchen to yours…….

Bestie Banana Bread

But you can just call me Kasey.


I am 30 years old! (for one more day)  You may remember that Tonya blogged my surprise Birthday party last December. 

Check it out here, it was so fun!  Can’t I just turn 30 again this year?!?!?!?!?!


   The hunka-hunka hottie on the left is my husband, Monty. 


He is 11 years older than I and he is my perfect match! He makes me laugh harder than anyone I know, and we are working hard to become each other’s #1 human priority.


We have 3 children…..

Let me re-phrase that, we have 3 gorgeous, brilliant, delightful children.


Karter is 5, and Kamilyn is 2 & Kolby is 6.


We live on a farm where I grew up.  It’s been in my family for several generations.


If I could fly like a bird I could be to Tonya’s house in less than 5 minutes!

(This makes me smile!) Smile 

I love Jesus, I love my family, I love Tonya. She is the friend that one rarely finds, and the sister I always wished for.  She is the perfect blend of splendid.

  So, I have to tell you, since this beloved blog began, I have been asked in Dillons, Kwik shops, Wal-Mart, Applebee’s, the Mall, and everywhere….

You’re Tonya’s best friend, right?….Is SHE for REAL?”

  At first I had to think…Hmmm….is she?


  She is consistently sunshine! She is a “glass half full” kinda gal. When it is raining in my world…she pours her sunshine over me and makes a rainbow.

Is it hard to listen to her always happy? How in the world could I NOT appreciate her rays of happiness….should I ask her to be grumpy? A “downer”, or a “drag”?

I AM HUMAN!!! I am of sin nature, so I would be lying if I told you that there aren’t times that I get frustrated or jealous. There are moments when I ask “Really Tonya?!?” But those thoughts aren’t from the Lord.

  Tonya is the real deal. She tries each day with an honest heart. Her desire is to follow Jesus.  She honors her husband, and she works each and everyday to be the mother God has called her to be.

  When I think back over the past 12 years of my life, I see God’s hand at work in many areas of my life. He always protected me. But I must say He has used Tonya as a daily tool in my life. As good as any daily devotion-she has taught me, she has led by example what I desired to be as a wife and mother. In many ways I feel like God used her to save me from destruction. Praise be His name!!!

  So you see, when asked these questions, when faced with rebuttal to some pretty BIG statements about this person in my life….I have to this to say:

Tonya is real.  She cries, she laughs, she hurts, she loves, and she listens. She is honest.  She loves the Lord.  Her greatest flaw in my opinion, is that she believes that other’s intentions are as real as her own.  But, best of all……she is MY BEST FRIEND!

  Phew, that was a big intro, right?! Now that you and I are better acquainted, I am excited to share something with you today:

My Top 10 Favorite Things for 2011! 

Like Oprah, get it?! Smile 

{Except there are not keys to your new car taped under your seat, sorry!}


Number 10- Heavenly Yeast Dinner Rolls



Sorry I don’t have my own photo, we gobbled them all up before I could get a shot.  This photo is property of Audrey style on Tasty Kitchen.  Her rolls are simple, easy, & fool-proof!!!! You CAN conquer your fear of yeast, and these are just the rolls to practice with!

9- Pinterest


Come see me!


And that is all I have to say about that Pinteresting Subject!  😉

8- Dry Shampoo

Ok Mommy’s!!!! Don’t have time to shampoo today?  Here is your answer….

TIGI Rockaholic Dirty Secret Dry Shampoo!


Simply spray, style and hit the road!!!

Good-bye Limp, Greasy Hair, Hello Hot Momma!

Ask Tonya….it really works and we neither one could be without it!!!

7- Heaven is FOR REAL


This book I read over one afternoon’s naptime! It just made me SO excited about Heaven!! It is a “life-changing” book, go get it and read it! It’s sold here.

6- Real Cheesecake

You know, the kind you make in Springform pan……

Caramel Apple Cheesecake

There are so many good recipes out there that use Springform Pans! Even savory cheesecakes for dipping tortilla chips in, like this Zesty Cheesecake.  {This one is YUMMY!}  Pampered Chef has a great one, let me know if I can order it for you. (No pressure!)  🙂

5- My Rubbermaid Mop from Home Depot


  Do you have floors? Well, then you need one of these!  LOL Smile


Tonya’s momma, who has a house cleaning business, introduced me to this AMAZING mop! You can mop wet or dry, and when you are done, just throw it in the washer for next time! It is SO SO nice! I’d say you trust someone in the profession of cleaning to pick out your mop for you……this is THE ONE! It is truly all you need!!

*Helpful hint: do not wash this mop with any softeners to prevent smearing next time.

4- Smell good spray from Walmart with matching oil & woodwicks.


I get SO many compliments on the smell in my home. My 6-year-old has allergies, which keeps me from burning candles.  A couple of years ago I thought I’d try this spray. Tonya had some and she set me up with a sample, it didn’t bother his allergies…so it was a winner!!! I pair it with the woodwicks and it is pure Heaven!!!  They have TONS of different scents too.

3- Slipper socks from Old Navy, only $5! 


(Photo property of Old Navy)

I actually got my pair 30% off and with free shipping! These slippers have grippers on the bottom and they are chenille…like putting your foot into luxury all day long.

2- Allegiant Air  http://www.allegiantair.com/


I am able to see my brother and his family for such a reasonable and affordable price! What precious memories are made because of Allegiant’s cheap airfare.

And my number 1 FAVORITE thing for 2011 is………….


1-The Grocery Game!!!

  The Grocery Game is TOO MUCH FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!  I love it!  Tons of deals just waiting to be discovered, you can read more about it here.


So I know that many of you have your own list of favorites, I’d love to hear them! By nature, I am not the kind of gal that enjoys daily or weekly tasks….so I am always looking for ways to make them extra fun and exciting!

Well, thanks for letting me stop by!  It was so nice to meet you all! 

I’ll be back, maybe even next year with my Top 10 for 2012?!?!?! 🙂

Have a wonder-filled day today!