Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Happy Half Birthday!

I wanted to do something special today.  Makai's birthday is on July 31st.  Because his birthday is in the summer, he never gets to bring treats to school.  Couple this with the fact that he is allergic to eggs also means that when other people have birthday treats, he usually doesn't get to partake.  I feel bad for him.  So today I thought I would surprise him with something special!

So last night I baked up some chocolate chip muffins (his favorite) which happen to be egg free and dairy free (for poor little Jameson).  I contacted his teacher and let her know my idea.  She thought it would be fun if I brought it in at the beginning of the day and then the kids could have them for snack time.  I wanted it to be a surprise, so I dropped the kids off as usual and then drove around and parked the car and took them in.

Boy was he surprised.  He didn't really know what to do with himself.  It was as if two strange worlds were colliding and he didn't know how to react.  He just sort of sat there.  I said "It is your half birthday so I brought you some treats!"  His reply.  "Oh".  Not much excitement.  Oh well.  I am sure he was excited on the inside right?   I hope it will be one of those memories that he holds dear and knows that his mom loves him and wanted to do something special for him.  We all need memories like that.  I used to love when my mom would do something special for me.  I remember her making my favorite foods when I was having a rough day.  There is nothing like the taste of homemade mashed potatoes and gravy to make you feel better (or even mashed potatoes from KFC).  Thanks mom for the special little things that you did that added up to making me feel special (and for the countless times you had to eat mashed potatoes and stove top stuffing and chocolate cake, however I don't think that one was as much of a sacrifice).  I hope I am carrying on that tradition.

So Makai, Happy Half Birthday.  I love you!

Did I mention that I added chocolate frosting to the muffin?

In case you are wondering how to make these most excellent muffins, here is the recipe.  I used to use the box kind, but with all of our allergies I had to find a recipe that everyone in our family could eat.  Here is what I came up with.  I combined a few recipes and tweaked them.  They are SO good.  You would never be able to tell that these are dairy free and egg free.  Makai even said that all of his friends LOVED them and wondered how I kept the chocolate chips so big inside.  I guess he thought it was pretty cool after all.  He told me that the kids said I should bring them again sometime.  Perhaps for his 3/4 birthday?  Ah, no.  You really should try these.  They don't take that much more time than the boxed kind and they are WAY better!  I dare you!  Try them and let me know what you think.

Lisa Lord's Special Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Muffins
1 1/4 cup oats
1 1/4 cup milk (I use rice milk)
1 egg ( I use one individual applesauce cup)
1/2 cup oil
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup chocolate chips (I use Giradelli's semi-sweet because they don't have milk in them)
1 1/4 cup flour
4 tsp. baking powder (yes you read that correctly.  It seems like a lot, but it works)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla

Combine oats and milk and let stand while you get the other ingredients together and put muffin papers in the pan.  Stir the egg (or applesauce), oil, brown sugar and chocolate chips into the milk mixture.  Combine the dry ingredients and add to mixture  (or if you are lazy like me, just dump everything in together and stir).  Put into muffin tins and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes (or until brown on top and cooked through).


Hope you like this Lord family staple!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Ava Grace- Sneak Peek

One of my favorite parts of my job is seeing people in their natural environment.  Kids are more comfortable in their own space, which usually makes for more natural looking pictures.  Not only that, but the pictures are guaranteed to match your house (because they are done IN your house).

It was so fun to go over to Erica and James' house and take some pictures of their girls.  Ava just turned one and she is a keeper!  I have watched her on a few occasions which made her even more comfortable with me.  Her eyes just sparkle!

Erica and James, I think you better start getting ready for the onslaught of boys knocking down your door!  Good luck.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Fish Family Sneak Peak

I have known the Fishes for a long time.  They are a great family.  We are kind of related.  Jane's brother is married to my sister.....so that makes us sisters once removed, right?  Jane is a lovely person.  She helped guide me in my first year of college when I was away from home and needed to hang out with some amazing Christian young women.  I really appreciated that.  Jason is just a good ol' boy.  He has that southern charm that brings a smile to your face!  His mama taught him well and it was a pleasure to have her along for the pictures!  I had the pleasure of meeting the Fishes today to take some family pictures.  IT. WAS. COLD.  They were such troopers and other than it being cold, it was PERFECT conditions to take pictures.  It was a coats on, coats off, go inside the building to get the feeling back in your fingers kind of day.  But it was also one of my favorite shoots thus far.  We got some great shots!  Here is a little sneak preview of some of the magic that happened today.

One down, two to go.  Stay tuned for more sneak peeks!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

One Year Olds- Cute but busy!

i.am.tired.  It feels like it has been a long day, and it is only 7:40.  Perhaps it is because I started my day early and took care of 5 kids today.  I watched a friend's sweet little girls today.  It was fun, but crazy!  I spent the day as a taxi and following around the one year old to make sure she didn't get into any trouble.  My house isn't exactly baby proof anymore.

Realization #1- I am glad that I don't have a one year old right now.  My baby is now 3 1/2 and at such a fun stage (most of the time, not counting the 30 minute crying spell tonight because he didn't want to eat his dinner.  Wish I could say that was an isolated incident, but he does that about 75% of the time at dinner.  Ready for that stage to be OVER!).

Realization #2 it is really hard to get anything done whilst taking care of 5 kids, however I did manage to make a blanket, finish a purse and do 3 loads of laundry.  Why can't I be that productive on normal days?

Just for nostalgia sake, here is a picture of my baby when he was one.  Really cute right?

Realization #3- I have some news to share.  Are you ready?  I just gave birth.....to a new website!  LiLo is on the web.  Come on over to www.photolilo.com and check it out.  I still have a few things to tweak (the font is really hard to read, sorry) but I really love the way it turned out.

Realization #4- I should be putting my kids to bed right now.  I better get going! 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The End of an Era

It has been brought to my attention that I have not yet blogged in 2012.  Oops!  Things have been a little crazy around the Lord household.

The last few weeks have been the ending of an era in our house.  For the last 8 1/2 years we have had a baby sleeping in the nursery at our house.  It has been repainted twice for 2 of the 3 kids (sorry middle child, you never get anything new).  The first nursery started with Buzz Lightyear blue on the bottom and then a cream color on the top with a chair rail seperating them.  Chris was going to draw a mural bears doing different things throughout the room.  Best intentions, but terrible follow through.  The bears were never drawn.

When it came time for #3, I was ready for a change.  I was tired of looking at a boring two toned room.  So, I re-did the room.  *Disclaimer- Chris Lord does not paint or participate in room overhauls.  HE HATES TO PAINT.  Lucky for him, I don't mind it (even if I was pregnant both times I painted the room).    So Jameson got a freshly redecorated room (thanks to his mom and brothers).

Look how little they are!

It was a periwinkle blue and green color.  One of the walls was striped with 12 inch stripes of blue and green.  I know I have a picture of the finished room somewhere, but I think it is on another computer (sorry), but here is quilt that came with the bedding set that JJ used and a picture of his name banner (see the striped wall behind).

But the time is done for having a baby in that room (yahoo!).  It is the end of an era.  There is a small (teeny, tiny) part of me that is sad that there will be no more Lord babies, but I am mostly excited about this new chapter in our lives.  NO MORE POTTY TRAINING......EVER!!!!  Can you tell I am pretty excited about that part.  I will miss the sweet middle of the night cuddles and having a baby told hold, but guess what?  I am a newborn photographer!  Therefore, I get my baby fix through the babies I get to photograph.  Sweet deal, hu?   Makai has been asking for his own room for awhile and we decided it would be a fun Christmas gift.  So this is what Makai opened on Christmas morning.  He had to assemble it in the right order to find out what his gift was.  Being a huge Lego lover, he had no trouble putting it together.

He was pretty excited!  The rest of the morning, he opened gifts that would go in his in Lego room.  Mimi got him a new mattress (she thought it was a lame gift, but Makai said it was his favorite gift- other than his room).  He also loved his new clock (thanks Fillharts!), radio (thanks Nana) and stuffed animal.

So, a few days after Christmas we headed out to find some things to redecorate the room and we went to the only place that would have everything we needed.....IKEA!  We had a great time getting mini rugs (oops forgot to take a picture), light fixtures, cork board and a shelf to make into a desk.  Then we headed to Walmart, JoAnn Fabrics and Home Depot to get paint, sheets, bed skirt, curtains (black sheets made into curtains), and fabric for a new bed spread.  Now do you understand why I haven't been blogging.  I have been shopping, sewing, painting, sewing, painting, reorganizing, and so forth.  This was a huge undertaking!  Now I am done (mostly)!  I still need to make tie backs for the curtains, glue lego duplos to the dresser for handles and finish a little paint touch up on the chalkboard paint border.  Not much right?  Here is the finished product.

Sorry, hard to get a good pic with the window light (South wall)

East wall

West wall

The best part about this room....the light!  Have I mentioned that I love IKEA?  They have this really cool light that has plastic around it so that you can fill it up with whatever you want.  So we filled it with, you guessed it, LEGOS!  I have to give a big shout out to my dad who came over and spent the day rewiring this room.  In our high quality house (did you catch the sarcasm), there are no in room light fixtures.  They just wire one of the outlets to the switch so that you have to plug something into the wall in order to have a light in the room.  Luckily, the attic access is in this room so he was able to climb into the attic and wire a box into the ceiling so that I could hang this super cool light.  He also installed the shelf so that Makai can have a desk for homework.  THANKS DAD!!!!  The light was worth it....right?

From the bottom looking up into the light
We finished off the room with a few Lego posters (that have seen better days, but what are you going to do) and a hand made quilt and Viola! a lego room.  This was really fun to put together and Makai loves his new room.  He did tell me that he misses sleeping with Tanner, but he does love staying up a little later than his brothers and reading in his new room!

So next time you are in the neighborhood, come on over and see the new room!