Friday, December 31, 2010

Random Thoughts

Wanted to post some random thoughts and happenings.  I was thinking about the name of our family blog.  One Crazy Household.  It truly does seem to fit us.  There is always some excitement going on; rarely a dull moment, and I cherish those dull moments so.
What will the new year bring for us?  Hmmm.  Well Isaac will officially be a teenager in February.  We should have four bedrooms + office in our house shortly.  Repaint the family room.  Ammon will be in first grade in the fall, opening up a world of more options for me.  Our home loan (7 year ARM) is due to run out this spring.  Going to try the gluten free diet crap again.  Oh wait, that's not new, but I've been off for quite some time.  Waaaa.  I love ice cream and carbs so.  Hopefully Justin and I will get away together again this year.
Looking at this list, there is nothing big coming up.  All normal-o family things that keep our house rolling. 
Other randomness:
We got lots of new games for Christmas and it has be sooooo much fun spending the week with the family. We usually go to Oklahoma for the break, which we love love love and have noticeably missed, but due to many reasons we stayed home.  This opened up the option of more personal family time which is rare and precious to me.  Albeit, there have been moments I either wanted to lock the kids in the bathroom, or leave the house for an indefinite amount of time.  
We have played a game called Smallworld several times and it is finally sinking in.  Wow that game has lots to learn, and I'm not sure that it's all that great yet, but for what it cost, we're going to love it.  We also have been playing nertz/oh heck/dutch blitz and a term coined by Isaac, doink.  We had a huge game tonight with everyone plus two of Jacob's friends. Those boys love to talk.  I finally had to initiate a new rule of no talking while playing.  Then the next round only one syllable words allowed when you play a card.  "dinosaur"  giggle giggle.
Also got Despicable Me which is a fantastic movie and is one of my all time favorites; the family has been walking around speaking in a German? accent and quoting the evil villain.
More thoughts:
I enjoy Ammon so much.  He has something special about him that makes me smile even at the blackest of times.  Not to say all of my children aren't special, I've just been thinking about him.  He has a great sense of humor and is constantly making jokes.  His latest thing is to rhyme.  You might ask him to go get a cup and he'd say go get a pup?  It's usually a letter p he uses.  
We went cross county skiing the other day and he went over a mile and did awesome.  
He said to me one day, I'm thinking about my love for you.  so sweet.  
One of my favorite things about my day is seeing Ammon walking home from the bus, with is blue Mario backpack slung sideways on him as he tromps through the snow.  If I go to meet him he usually comes up to me with a full out run (with back pack) and jumps into my arms with a huge hug and kiss.  And of course, chicken nuggets with honey for lunch.  Every day.  
He got Goosebumps for the Wii for Christmas and can't get enough of it.  
He is so eager to please and loves to copy me or Justin.  Oh, he is a stinker at prayers.  He is just finally saying them, and they are beautiful.  He is thankful for everything and asks for nothing.  It's just hard to get him to say them at other times than bed time.  And at any other prayer time, he is open eyed, rolling around on the floor, eating his food etc.  Then Jacob feels like he's the dictator making sure everyone is proper during prayer, so I'm always eyes open making gestures at both of them.  I hope Heavenly Father is looking down and laughing at us occasionally.  It must be a humorous sight on occasion. 

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Let's Talk...

I was at my friends house the other day and saw this gorgeously cut up cubed caramels.  I thought to myself, "I should make those, mmmmm, and dip them in chocolate."
On the way home I bought some heavy whipping cream, called my mom for advice and got to it.  
I've always heard that candy making is a tough business, but hoped it would just happen to work perfectly for me.  ha ha. ha hahaha.  
Burned caramel.  Make that burned toffee.
Let's try that again.  
I had to pick Isaac up from a friends house, or I wouldn't have gone out in the snow (4+ inches on top of the 17" from last week).  I dragged/drug him to Rainbow foods and bought my second set of cream.  At least it was on sale for $2.  
So I called my Mom and found out that you should never use a stainless steal pan for making candy because it gets hot spots.  Okie dokie then.
After I (supposedly) got the kiddos in bed, I set out on making caramel round #2.  
See where this is going?
Oh my goodness!  It didn't burn!  The color was a rich....caramel color and looked fantastic!  Got the temperature up to soft ball and everything.  I'm such a big girl!  It only took two tries and I'm awesome.  I can't wait to dip these babies in some chocolate!
haha. hahahahaha.
Next morning, my caramel, upon inspection is toffee yet again, but at least not burned.
I called my mom feeling like a huge disappointment, but she had a remedy.
Once I get the caramel out of the pan, warm it back up with 1/2 cup milk until it gets to soft ball.  Oh wait a minute.  What is this about your thermometer?  
We do a boiling water test and find out that my two thermometers read waayyyy different.  So, I learned another lesson:   do not trust thermometers.
I set out to fix my second batch, which was nice because I had forgotten to put in vanilla and salt :)
I thought it would be interesting to use both of my thermometers to see what the difference was.  Twenty to 30 degrees.  That's why I had toffee.  
So now, I have soft caramels waiting to be cut and dipped.  
This story might not be over since I haven't even tasted the stuff yet.
Anyone have some more advice or fun stories to share?


After I finally got the caramel out of the pan, I had a taste and it was yummy.
I dipped all of it tonight, as you can see.
My lovely little army of caramels.


Merry Christmas friends and family!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

15 Years *Warning - Gooshy post*

It's hard to believe 15 years have passed since I became a Dittmer.  I know I shouldn't say this, but the going hasn't been that rough.  Maybe it's because I married such an exceptional man that puts up with my controlling nature.  Or how he is so patient with the children.  Or how he is one of the most giving people I've even known. I know Heavenly Father has had a huge part in it as well, obviously.  I think my marriage rocks.  
  Justin is amazing.  He's the most perfect guy for me.  I love how my heart quickens when I hear the garage door open and then a "Hey baby!" as he walks in the door.  
I am still in love with Justin and plan on keeping him forever.  
I think he even loves me too : )

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Como Zoo

The kids had a day off of school so we went to Como Zoo on our way home from dentist appointments.  Dad was able to meet us for lunch as well :)

Random Falls Photos

I've been slow getting around to editing some fall walks I had with Justin and Ammon.  Here's some of my favorites:

 "Giant Justin"

 What kind of seed pod is this?

 These were all taken in Rice Creek trails on Cty I and 35W