Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hurricane Irene

What a crazy day today has been! The East Coast has been getting hit by Hurricane Irene (turned to Tropical Storm Irene after it moved further north). We have never dealt with a hurricane since owning our home. Really, I can't remember a time that we have really had any problems due to a hurricane. The town I grew up in has signs up from Agnes, but that one was before my time in 1972. 

Our day started at about 3 am in the worst way... as I walked passed our basement steps, you could smell water. Usually it's a small amount that flows across our unfinished basement floor... but the stench was that of standing water. It flowed, but there was too much  and it was coming in everywhere! While we know of a few "bad spots" where the amount of rain was just too much for the old cinder block walls to handle. We also found a new bad spot... right where the steps meet the cement floor. Evidently, they cut into the cement to put the stairs in. They must have dug too deep because the water was coming up faster than we could clean it! It was awful! The hubby and I decided that we should try and sleep at least until the kids get up. So, around 5, I headed back to bed only to have the hubby come in around 6:30 telling me we had a problem. That is such an awful way to wake up!

As it turns out, we had a tree down. Not only did a tree fall, but the tree split in 3. 1/3 was still standing, 1/3 fell in our back yard and the last 1/3 fell right across my neighbor's driveway! Luckily for us, it didn't do any damage to any one's house or other property. We aren't sure if the tree is ours or our neighbors. The property line is unclear in that area. Here are a few pictures from the fallen tree. Hopefully everyone else made it out without any major problems!

The center of what's left of the tree...

This is the 1/3 that fell into our yard.

This is the 1/3 that fell onto my neighbor's driveway.

This is a good picture to show how it split into 3.

Around 10:30am, the neighbor came over and told us that we no longer had to worry about the remaining 1/3 of the tree. Another gust of wind brought it down!  It was leaning toward his garage, but thankfully, it blew the opposite direction. We now have 2/3 of this tree in our backyard! We got the neighbors driveway cleared today, but our backyard will have to wait for another day.

My poor kiwi plants!! OK... this one died a few weeks back in the drought......

.... but this one was very healthy!! The tree snapped my metal trellis right in half! After looking at it from the other direction, I think the plant might be alright. I won't know for sure until we get the tree off of it!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Crock Pot Meals

This post is really an extension of my last one. I thought maybe some of you might have some good crock pot meals to share? I have a small list that I want to try this winter that I'd like to share with everyone, but maybe some one else has a family favorite that they'd share with us? I would love to hear from you! Thank you in advance and happy cooking! :)

Crock Pot Ravioli

I have recently stumbled across this great website called Pinterest. What is Pinterest you ask? It is a neat website that you can see pictures of ... well... just about anything, literally. Recipes, beautiful beaches, organizational tips and tricks, things for the house, crafts for the kids, anything. Once you join, if you find a picture/idea that you like, you can "repin" it to your own wall. That lets you save it to your board while also sharing it with your friends.

While searching on Pinterest, I found some great crock pot recipes! In the winter time, I LOVE making hearty meals in the crock pot! I just love everything about a delicious warm meal that makes the entire house smell good!

I have been looking forward to using the crock pot so much that I found a yummy recipe on Pinterest and  made it for supper last night! It's Crock Pot Ravioli. My version isn't exactly like that one, but we thought it was pretty good! I couldn't find the Five Cheese Ravioli at my WalMart, they only had Beef Ravioli. I also used 1 jar of sauce along with 1 can of pizza sauce. It started off with just the jar of sauce, but it seemed to get a little dry, so I added the only thing that I had. I didn't take pictures, because at the time, I wasn't thinking about blogging about the recipe. I wasn't sure how it would be. I definitely plan to make it again. (I promise I'll take pictures!) The hubby and kiddos loved it! Next time, I'll look for the Five Cheese Ravioli and I also plan to add meatballs to the sauce. It was a very good and cheap meal. The bag of ravioli was $2.27 and the jar of sauce was (I think) $1.33.  I added some garlic bread that I had in the freezer already and I had some fresh green beans that I cooked on the stove. The entire meal fed a family of 4 and gave us enough left overs for lunch for the baby and only cost about $5. Can't beat that, right??

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop - closes 8/31/11

 Looking for a something new to read? Check out this Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop. Thank you to, MomsReview4You for hosting!! Happy Hopping!! :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Saint Peter's Village

Family Fun Day - July 18, 2011 - Saint Peter's Village

Saint Peter's Village is a beautiful little town located in Chester County, Pennsylvania. The historic town dates back to before the Civil War. There is a bakery, an arcade, an ice cream shoppe, an antique store, an inn and restaurant. There is also a creek and a hiking trail. Here are a few pictures from our visit. We went on a Monday and most of the shops are closed on Mondays. We were hoping to go on a hike while we were there, but the temperature was so stinking hot it was just too unbearable! It didn't help any that we took the stroller and the trail is not stroller friendly. We did have a ton of fun walking around. We do plan to go back when the weather is a little cooler and we know to bring the back pack to carry the baby around.

A look down the road and the rest of town.


I thought this was a really neat twist on down spouting.

Village Arcade

Candlelight Ghost Tours

The post office.

A look at town from the other direction.

A bell in some one's yard.

The same house had this cool bird house. 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Good-bye Summer...

As summer comes to an end, I feel like I will finally be able to catch up on all of the blogs that I have been meaning to write and post. My kids keep me very busy!
My oldest starts school next week. We have really enjoyed spending the summer together. This summer has been very different than summers in the past. My husband works 4 nights a week vs. 6-7 days a week. That has given us 3 full days to spend together. For the past few weeks, Tuesdays have been our "Family Fun Day". We have done all sorts of things for Family Fun Day.... mini golf, a nice long drive, a trip to Cabelas, a few day trips to local towns, a nice hike, anything that the kids might enjoy. I plan to blog about a few of them. I always carry my camera around, but I often forget to charge the battery. (It is a common problem that I have, but I never seem to remember until the next time I need the camera.)

It has been a great summer for us! We have made a lot of great memories that I hope the kids will carry with them. We didn't get to go on a big exciting vacation, but we spent a lot of quality time together.

Have you enjoyed your summer? Did you go on any family vacations? Are your children getting ready to start school?

Thursday, August 4, 2011


Birthdays are always special days in our house. We usually only celebrate them as a family, sometimes inviting our parents and grandparents to join us. We have big parties for our kids for their first birthdays and (so far) the first birthday they have once they've started school- this way they can invite their friends to celebrate with them.

Today is a very special day at our house. Our baby boy turns 1! Where has the time gone? My kids are growing up so fast! They definitely don't stay little for long! This past year has been so much fun! It has been a true joy watching the baby grow and as he got older playing with his big brother. The two of them have so much fun together. I love listening to the baby giggle, laugh, and squeal as he plays with his "Bub-bub". (That is what he / we call his big brother. He started calling him that when he was 6 or 7 months old.)

There will be a few more birthday related posts to come. I am making 2 cakes for his birthday party. The one that he will get to eat or smash or play with or whatever it is he will do with his own little cake. The other one will be a sheet cake for his party guests to eat.

Do you do anything special for birthdays in your house? Are certain birthdays celebrated differently than others?