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Archive for August, 2009

It will be impossible for me to recall everything blog-worthy over the last month, so bear with me!

Aslan turns 4

Aslan’s fourth birthday, July 25, was also our big moving day. In all the hustle and bustle, I couldn’t find the camera. Turns out, I wasn’t the one who misplaced it that time :).

A few days earlier, Shiloh and I went shopping for a gift, just the two of us. We got a Playmobile set from Kid’s Stuff in downtown Mount Vernon. I love that store! Playmobile is a German brand. I grew up playing with their sets, and Aslan will sit for hours with them. Shiloh and I picked out a set with horses, riders, jumps, a fence, and spectators. I opened the box after the kids were in bed and took out all of the really little pieces that I didn’t want Liesel to get a hold of. I’ll introduce those later. Then, I couldn’t help myself. While James slept on the couch, I played with the toys a bit. I left them all set up on the living room floor under a sheet, to reveal to Aslan in the morning.

Aslan woke up to a green dinosaur cake. It was the delicious carrot cake that I grew up requesting every birthday, but I used a gluten free flour mix, and coconut oil in place of butter. I thought that the cake turned out well, but the dairy-free frosting/glaze was a disaster. Aslan loved it anyway, what four-year-old wouldn’t love a dinosaur cake?

Aslan also spent plenty of time introducing his older horses and riders to the new horses and riders. Unfortunatly, due to the move, he hasn’t been able to play with them much since. Once the rain season really sets in we’ll pull them out again. For now, there’s too much to do …in the dirt.

Fun and Work in the Dirt

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The weather has been absolutely perfect for our camping trip life! All of us are enjoying the fresh air. The trailer has good usable space. We’ve got a bit more work to do to get our tent ready for relaxing in. James has been working like crazy since we got here, some of the time one-handed due to a gash to the bone on the inside of his right pointer finger knuckle. It was bad enough for him to request stitches at the hospital, which is something he never does! While he wasn’t able to due much lifting and he was slowed down by his finger, he was the mastermind behind a carport and deck for his parents, and building a bunk bed and ladder for the boys. About a week after his accident, he was also able to go back to work.

Birthday Party!

The deck James built has become a favorite hang-out spot for our family. It was done just in time for a birthday party for the boys. Since Aslan’s birthday was July 25 and Shiloh’s is August 26, we did a combined party for them in the middle. The deck made the party a huge success. (Most of these pictures were taken by Ashley, my wonderful new sister-in-law).

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Birthday activities included playing in the dirt, picking blackberries, expanding sponge animals in water, squirt guns, and playing with the gifts. For one of the few moments that the boys were all quietly occupied, I looked and each one of them had found their own special interest among the gifts. Aslan was looking at a book about animals, Shiloh was coloring, and Ira was building with Krinkles. It’s amazing how such strong preferances surface even in young children!

Oh, and my second gluten-free, dairy-free, corn-free birthday cake turned out perfectly! Instead of using the gluten-free flour mix, I bought a spice-cake mix and added grated carrot and pineapple. I think this turned out better than using the flour mix because it didn’t contain any garbonzo bean flour. Garbonzo bean flour has a pretty strong taste which I don’t mind in bread, but I think it’s best to make cakes without it. The spice cake mix also had more of the spices than my carrot cake recipe called for. The real test was the frosting. I followed a recipe using coconut milk, coconut oil, agave syrup, and arrowroot powder. Making the frosting was scary because it didn’t look anything like frosting until just before I put it on the cake! I had to keep it heated for a while, keep the arrowroot blended in, and then put it in the freezer for 40 minutes, then beat it really well. When it was finally ready to go on the cake, though, it was AMAZING! It was hard to believe that the cake was really allergen free, and pretty healthy because it tasted so good.

After the party, we used our cozy green tent for entertaining for the first time. The Lawrences stayed for dinner. We’ve been trying to get in as much time with them as possible because soon they will be moving out of state. Very sad. They are our kids’ god-parents.

We barbequed outside. In the tent, we all sat on pillows around a table propped up on cynder blocks. All of the kiddos ended up falling asleep while we visited. Soon we hope to use the tent more. It needs a level, rock-free surface to be set up on, good lighting, and a bunch of bean bags to sit on.

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To Be Continued…

This is far from all that I have to share about, but the pictures of Liesel’s 10-month birthday, her first steps, the bunk bed James built, the new big-boy bikes and helmets, our hike in Rockport, and the surprise birthday party will have to wait until next time because the camera containing all the newest pictures is with ┬áJames today! I also need to get ahold of the family pictures taken at the beginning of July when David and Ashley were both visiting and I was camera-less.

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