Monday, July 28, 2008

Another year older...

A quick pic of the girls and me last night at the Cheesecake Factory where we went following church for a yummy birthday dinner! (Mallory was out of town with the inlaws).

Word Play ~ K


Key chain - My best friend got me a really cool digital photo key chain for Christmas. I hate to admit that until today it sat in the box. I was actually very excited to get it and I love the idea... but It's been on the table by my bed for 7 months. I have had every intention of taking the time to figure out how to load my pictures onto it and swap my keys over, but I've just been too lazy. I am proud to announce that today I finally got it loaded with cute pictures of the girls & it even hosts my keys! I feel so accomplished.

Kitchen - One of my favorite rooms in the house. I love to cook but not bake... probably because baking takes more patience. Just check out this lovely meal I concocted up the other day. It was way yummy! (Not sure why I feel the need to take photos when I cook... it's the blogging addiction, I'm sure).

Kevin ~ My darling husband. We have been together nearing half our lives now (wow, I'm getting old!) and married for 11 of those years. I can't imagine life without him. He is my friend, my love, my cheerleader, my confidant, my soundboard, and my partner in parenting. He loves video games (Rock Band is his latest obsession), staying up late (sometimes an annoyance), singing, traveling (and taking odd routes to places), watching baseball and is a popcorn aficionado. He is an awesome dad. And of course, I couldn't be me if I didn't post a pic... this one is from our younger, thinner days! Forgive the quality, it's a picture of a picture. I didn't want to take the time to scan.

Kitty - Not much in Clara's world rates over her kitty. Actually, we now have FOUR of the same kitty and most of them are equally loved. If we happen to know where all four are, we have to have all four! At one point I tried to limit kitty usage... well, that didn't work too well. She's just as attached as ever, and I imagine the day that she's no longer attached (as Mallory's "Piggy" is no longer a necessity), I will probably lament the fact!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Best Buds

My youngest and my best friend's little boy are about 3 months apart & they adore one another. This summer, Clara's staying with them most week days while the older two are at the summer care program associated with their school. They play so well together & we just had to get the two of them in the studio for some engagement photos! I might want to put some research into the whole betrothal thing. In the meantime, enjoy their SLIDESHOW of sweet, sweet pictures!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Already getting ready for the new school year!

I did all the girls school clothes shopping online this year and it came in today. Thankfully, it appears the sizing chart was right-on, and all the clothes fit. Yay! Here are the girls modeling their new jumpers and backpacks. (They each chose their own color of backpack).

And this is just a cute random picture of the girls getting along snapping the ends off green beans. Of course, the getting along didn't last long, and the younger two lost interest about 1/2 way through, so Mallory ended up finishing by herself. All three ate the finished product, though!

Word Play ~ J


Jacob ~ Jacob is Clara's bestest friend. They have been having so much fun together this summer! Here's a cute pic from today of Pirate Jacob & mommy!

Ji-normous (okay, so I know technically it's not a word, and if it were it would start with a G, but I'm having trouble here) ~ the size of the pile of laundry sitting across the room staring at me.

jpeg - a common photo file extension. I shoot in RAW and convert to JPEG. Why not start in jpeg? It's a losse (sp?) file, meaning every time you open and close it, it looses a little bit of data whereas a RAW file is more like a negative that never changes.

Jellies ~ Crocs of the 80s. They were oh-so-cool.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Fideo - a How To

Despite all the other things I should be doing (editing wedding pictures comes to mind), I was feeling so homemakerish (see previous post) that I decided to go all Pioneer Woman on you and give you a step by step narration on how to cook fideo.

So, what is fideo? It's a Mexican dish that is somewhat a cross between rice and spaghetti. You can get it in the international foods isle at the grocery store. It comes in a yellow box & is very inexpensive (a good thing!) This is two boxes poured in a pan with a little olive oil:
First you brown the fideo. I remember the first time I was told to "brown the rice" I really had no idea what that meant. All you have to do is stir the rice (or fideo) around in the olive oil on high or medium-high heat and wait until it actually turns brown like this. When it's brown, turn off the heat and add some minced garlic: (By the way, this is exactly the same way I make my Mexican rice - just substitue a cup of longrain white rice for the fideo).

Next pour in a can of chicken broth,

And depending on how much of a kick you want, you can stir in salsa, a whole or half can of Rotel (at varying temperatures), or just some diced tomatoes. I happened to have just finished making some fresh salsa, so that's what I used.

I also like to add some cumin, which the label clearly states has no nutritional value, but adds a nice flavor:

So, now it looks like this. Turn your heat back on high until it starts to simmer.

Then cover the pan and reduce the heat to low:
You can remove the lid and stir a couple times to keep it from sticking to the pan. After 15-20 minutes or so (longer for rice) you have your finished product!

Another trip to Froberg's brings out the Betty Crocker in me...

So we took another trip to Froberg's today to buy fresh fruits & veggies. We brought along more peeps today - my mom & April joined us. All was well, with the exception of being fussed at for swinging on the swings that were apparently not for public use. Oops!

On the way home we're in the car jamming to the sounds of a capella grooves when I hear a "glub, glub, glub" and a trinkling of water - similar to water coming out of a faucet yet there is no faucet in our van... Long story short, Clara just decided to POUR out her entire bottle of water in the floor. Fortunately for me, my van was messy enough that the water was soaked up by an extra t-shirt laying beneath her seat. Unfortunately for me, I didn't pay attention as I was getting out of the car having pulled over soon thereafter, and when I got back in the car and in my seat after spanking my child I noticed there was fresh chewing gum all over the bottom of my shoe and now the floorboard. Lovely.

When we got home, I made some fresh salsa and life was better again. I love fresh salsa. I even gave some away in these cute little jars. I love the way using ball jars makes me feel all betty-crockery!
After dinner, my younger two children who hadn't taken naps all day went to bed early. They were asleep by 7. Ah, the joys of the little things in life. I think I'll go have some more chips & salsa. It's made with vegetables, so it should be good for me, right?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Word Play ~ I


Internet - I could go for two weeks or more without the television and not miss it. (I'm telling the truth - just ask Kevin!) But take away my internet access for an hour and I'm a mess! Aside from the work I do with my photo cart online and email, I also frequent Google Reader, dpchallenge, and Facebook pretty much daily. I know, it's an addiction.

Insects - Something my 7 year old can tell you pretty much all you need to know about because she's quite studied on the topic.

Intelligence - Something we value highly in our household. When we were first dating Kevin told me he wouldn't ever marry anyone who wasn't smarter or at least as smart as he was. I'll take that as a compliment, I suppose. Although he may question his decision now and then!

Ipod - I do not currently own an ipod. Well, I suppose if we're being technically honest we do have a cheap ipod shuffle that we got when we signed the lease on our transitional apartment when we first moved to Pearland - but we don't use it. Lately, Kevin's been putting all our cds into digital format, and I have my eye on the Zune... but I'm not completely sure yet. Comments or input on that?

Incredibly cute and Innocent-looking - Well, I had to get a picture in somehow!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Word Play ~ H

I realized as I read through all my old blog posts that my wordplay posts stopped after the letter G, so I thought I'd try to revive them and get a little further this time. So without further ado, here is...


Haircut - If you hadn't noticed in some of the latest posts, Lila has a new summer haircut that I big puffy heart, LOVE! I think it suits her personality to a tee! I'm so glad she wanted it cut short. Even though Daddy wasn't so sure at first, he admits that he likes it too.

House - We've been doing summer cleaning around the house & it's looking better! I have supercleaned all but our bathroom & closets (a weekend event all on their own), the hall closet, and the girls bathroom. It's still not perfect, but we're getting there!

Houston - one of the reasons we love Pearland so much is its close proximity to Houston. We can be there in 15 minutes. It's so nice having the perks of a big city without all the daily traffic!

Hot - Baby, it's HOT outside! I think it reached over 100 degrees yesterday.

The Blog Book

I recently decided that I needed a good backup of my blog since it's become somewhat of a public journal and a documentation of all the cute little random things the girls do. I would be upset if I lost all the entries! So I did some reasearch and decided to turn my blog into a book! I ended up using because they had an easy "import from blog" feature. I still had to go in and spend some time formatting each page like I wanted it, but I am pretty pleased with the result! Now I'll just have to do a new addition every couple years or so!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The week in review...

It's been about a week since my last post, so I figured I'd just do a quick update & share a couple of pictures.

First and foremost, we're working on big changes at the Odom house! I'm tired of all the excess and clutter that constantly help make our house a mess. For the past couple of weeks I've been slowly working through the house one room at a time doing a good spring cleaning and decluttering. The playroom was my biggest accomplishment as it was in the worst shape. It's amazing how much better the kids play in there now that it's actually clean and organized enough for them to know what they have!

Some random pics of my task... this was our yard the night before trash day... we also gave away or donated over 10 bags of toys and clothes.

The playroom...

The FLOOR in the playroom. (Believe it or not, this is HUGE):

Another thing we did this week was to go to Froberg's Farm in Alvin. It wasn't a farm, farm - like with cows, horses & pigs like Clara thought it should be - more of a large Farmer's Market. But the produce was super-fresh & the prices were awesome. (Not to mention the melt-in-your-mouth fried pies!!) We'll definitely be going back. They had this beautiful tree with a low branch at the entrance & I (ever the photographer) thought it looked like a good photo op. While we were there I learned that Amanda had never made fried squash, so like any good southern girl I made it my mission to teach her. We came home and fried up a batch using the squash and fresh-ground cornmeal we had just purchased. Yum!

So those were the highlights. Other things did happen this week... (like my laptop got stepped on by a cute almost-three-year-old and is now slowly becoming a POW. We looked for a replacement today but haven't decided on anything yet. In the meantime, I just minimize my windows so it doesn't matter that the upper right-hand 1/4th of the screen is completely white with cracks & lines shooting across the remainder of the screen.)... but nothing quite so exciting as the aforementioned events. Next step is our bedroom. Look out world!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Our 4th, part 2

This was the first Saturday in six weeks that I've had off, plus Kevin and I were both off Friday as well, so we took advantage of the weekend! The older two girls both got haircuts Thursday evening, followed by dinner at the Cracker Barrel where we let them eat dessert first!

Friday we went to my parent's for the All-American meal of hamburgers and hot-dogs (I wonder how many were sold this past week?!) and enjoyed an afternoon of fun. Despite the ominous weather, the girls were able to play in the pool in the back yard and had so much fun! Uncle Travis even jumped in at one point and did some spashing!

Something you may or may not know about my husband is that he likes to take the "long way" home and loves to explore new/uncharted roads. On the trip back home, despite several dead-end signs, he figured "GPS knows best" and led us down roads where we ended up turning around. I think the trip from Angleton to Pearland took about 2 hours.

Here's an example:

Yes, that's a cow. Here's a closer look:

Of course we ended the night by going to the carnival and fireworks display at "The Rig" (Pearland Football Staduim). The girls had a great time. Clara told me "The fireworks make me happy."

They even slept until a quarter to 9:00 this morning, which made ME happy!

Friday, July 04, 2008

Happy Fourth!

More to follow. I'm calling it a night. :)

Another Cute Quote

Overheard in the car as we're driving home from the fireworks tonight:

Lila: "Are we going to Dallas?"
Kevin: "Do you want to go to Dallas?"
Clara: "NO! I want go to Sonic!"

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Last One...

Mallory's class ballet dance:


This is Mallory's class tap dance. The zoom feature wasn't working when we recorded this one and Kevin didn't want to stop in the middle, so the quality isn't as good.

Clara's Bedtime Quotes

Both Clara & Lila were crying for Daddy, who was still at school when bedtime rolled around.

Clara: "Lila - Quiet! I crying!"


Clara: "Mommy? Daddy said no talking?"
Me: "Yes, no more talking."
Clara: "Moses said 'Let my people GO'!"

Mallory's Tap Feature

Mallory and Co. as Royal Guards. Mallory's really excelled this year in tap!

Petunias - Lila's class ballet rotine

Here is Lila as a petunia! Excuse the shaking as Kevin laughs during the middle... in the final performance, she got frustrated with her classmates and slapped her hand to her forehead and shook her head in obvious frustration. I was laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes!

Recital Video 1

Watch out world, I figured it out... The recital videos!

This one is Mallory & Lila's ballet duet. They were the petite & budding poppy. The recital performance was actually a little better - they ended in the correct "pose".