Fresno Friday-Blossom Trail

This week the girls, my mom, and I made the Blossom Trail and School House Restaurant a tradition.  We did this last year and loved it so much we did it again.
We drove straight to School House for lunch and had a delicious meal.  We both had salads and they were spectacular.  We finished with dessert on their beautiful patio.  We had their apple bread pudding which is to die for.
School House was built in 1890 and rebuilt in its current architecture in 1921.  It was a working school until 1958.  It then ran as a steakhouse for 30 years.  Unfortunately it was vacant for many many years.  The current owners remodeled and opened in 2012.  It's the best atmosphere unlike any other in Fresno that I know of.  The food rivals the atmosphere and I highly recommend making the drive!
After lunch we did a portion of the Blossom Trail.  We couldn't do the whole thing because we needed to get home for naps.  It seemed like we went in between the blossoms.  The pink ones weren't totally out yet and the white ones were basically on the ground.  Either way it's a sight that I recommend because it's something different to do in our own "backyard."
Not only were the blossoms not ideal I went to take a picture and realized my memory card wasn't in my DSLR.  Oh geez!  Thank goodness for the iPhone.

Our last stop was Simonian Farms.  This is the official start to the Blossom Trail.  You can find yummy treats, drinks, and a few photo opps.

Thank you mom for the delicious lunch and your company.

This was hilarious.  Madi didn't want her sister to hold her up and she just wanted to crawl off.  But it was quite MUDDY!  This was a near disaster.

Here are maps of the trail:

Mommy Monday-Instilling Faith

As a mom I have to teach my girls a long list of things: manners, how to share, how to eat, how to dress themselves, how to count, how to spell, how to ride a bike, how to skip, and the list goes on and on.  However, I think the number one thing I need to teach my children is faith.  I believe it is our responsibility as parents to expose our children to faith, teach them how to live and be faithful, and then hope that one day they will continue with their journey.
  Since it is Lent right now and my mind is extra focused on faith I thought I would share how I'm trying to teach my girls about Christ.  This is a really difficult task because I am still growing in my own faith so to be responsible for faith in my children is a major responsibility.  First and foremost we had our girls baptized when they were a few months old.  We also attend mass every weekend with a few exceptions.  It's such a challenge taking young children to church especially when we had two but just like everything else church took practice for Emily.  After what seemed like forever she started to behave during mass and stay quiet.  Quite the task for Miss Emily Grace.
We also say morning prayers together which usually takes place in the car on our way to wherever. We say grace before meals and to be totally honest this usually only happens before dinner.  As a family we say our night prayers right before Emily goes to bed.  We always end with, "Thank you Jesus for..."  Emily finishes the sentence with whatever she is thankful for that day.
During advent we light an Advent Wreath together as a family and read a passage from the Bible.  During Lent we say a decade of the rosary everyday and this Lent I'm watching #shareJesus videos which I try to get Emily to watch with me too.
As with anything in life the greatest way to teach something is to model it and walk the walk.  I went to Catholic School until fourth grade, went to church every week, and had great teachings at home but my greatest role model was my grandmother.  She was an extremely disciplined and faithful woman.  Not only was she extremely involved with her church, she devoted much of her life to her faith.  She had a prayer room in her house where she spent many hours.  I would watch her and pray with her and I learned thru action the importance of faith.  
I hope that I can be a role model for my children as well, just like my grandma and mom were when I was growing up.
I would love to hear ideas on how to pass on faith.  What do you do?

Supper Sunday- Fancy Burritos

Fancy Burritos

  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds chuck roast 
  • large can red enchilada sauce
  • 2 bouillon cubes (chicken or beef works)
  • 1 can refried beans
  • Burrito size flour tortillas
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Sour cream

Put beef, whole bouillon cubes (do NOT add water), and 1/2 can of enchilada sauce into a crock pot and cook on low for 7-8 hours

When beef is done (very tender and flakes off when stirred), heat up refried beans in the microwave and put your oven on broil. On an oven-proof plate lay out a tortilla.  Place on tortilla about 1/2 cup of the meat, drained by using a slotted spoon, a spoonful or two of beans, sour cream, and shredded cheese. Roll into a burrito. Pour some of the remaining enchilada sauce over the burrito to cover it. Sprinkle with some cheddar cheese. Broil until cheese is bubbly, about 2-4 minutes.
These are to die for!!! Super easy and super yummy; you will thank me later!

Madi-9 Months

Madi is celebrating her 3/4 birthday today!  She's 9 months and thinks she is hot stuff.  She's power crawling, couch surfing, climbing, and keeping me on my toes.  
She's in 6-9 month clothing and some 9-12 month clothes.  She's in size 3 diapers and I would like to point out that Emily was wearing size 3 diapers when Madi was born (she was 2.5 years old).
She nurses at 7 am, 11, 3 pm, and gets a bottle at 7 pm.  She naps from 9-11 am, 1-3 pm, and 5:30-6pm.  All of these are estimates and sometimes we deviate or she sleeps longer and at this point I just let her.  She absolutely loves her big girl food and is still getting two meals a day around 12:15 and 5:00 pm.  I'm planning on moving her to three meals a day and introducing some protein very soon.  She's pretty much over milk and wants food.  The new foods since last month are banana and pear.
She got her left lateral incisor on 2/14 for a total of 5 teeth.  She crawled over and bit me twice this past weekend and Emily once.  The joys of teething!
Last month I reported that we were taking her off of her acid reflux medication and all of a sudden she took a turn for the worse.  She went back to a TERRIBLE mood, wouldn't sleep thru the night, and would turn bright red, clinch her fists, and scream.  Poor baby girl I guess really does have a problem. So we're back on it and have to try weaning yet again.
Sissy and her are starting to actually play together and it's really cute.  Madi wants to always be right be her big sister.
Happy 3/4 birthday baby girl!

I Love You Mosteset- Valentines 2015

We celebrated 14 days of love with my mom as we always have.  Except I was a terrible daughter and didn't participate this year.  I was out of town for work, then planning our 30th party, then I got super sick.  So my mom gave us girls gifts in our mailboxes each day and we gave Voa Voa a gift on Valentine's Day.  We had so much fun opening our mailboxes, dressing up for the holiday, and celebrating with yummy treats.
Emily had so much fun celebrating Valentine's Day at school but her school activities will be in the February School Days blog post.
Daddy was out of town during Valentine's so us girls celebrated together.  Also Voa Voa was out of town so we decorated her front yard with large hearts so that when she returned home she would be greeted with a surprise.
(The blog title comes from something I started with my mom when I was very little and now Emily says it to us.  The first person says, "I love you."  Second person responds, "I love you more."  Then, "I love you most." Then, "I love you mostest!")

One treat from 14 Days of Love

One of my gifts from Voa Voa that Emily made.

Emily's godfather, Uncle Mike, bought her this outfit for Valentine's.  He's the best and sure spoils his girl!  We love you Uncle Mike!!!

Emily putting up hearts in Voa Voa's yard.

Valentine I received from my dear friend Christina.

A few of the Valentine's the girls received. Not all pictured.

Fresno Friday- Needa Cheesecake

Today the girls and I headed over to Needa Cheesecake for an afternoon treat.  I heard about this spot from FresYes and have been wanting to try it out ever since their post.  I told Emily we were going for a treat and she asked what it was; I told her cheesecake.  After a few seconds she says, "Emmy like grilled cheese and string cheese, but no like cake cheese."  It was too funny!

Anyways this is located on the Southeast corner of First and Shaw.  I found it a bit ironic that it is across the street from the Cheesecake Factory but hopefully this doesn't affect them.

They had a wide selection of cheesecakes; slices are $5.50 each and whole cheesecakes are $45.  They have a loyalty program for discounts.

Emily and I selected Toffee cheesecake and brought it home to share.  It was very good; not too rich.

As you know I LOVE local places and hope that they get support.  So if you're needing to curb your sweet tooth or need a whole cheesecake for an event please check this place out.

O "CRAPS" I'm 30!!!!

On my actual birthday I had a meeting all morning and then drove home from Indian Wells.  I didn't get home until almost 7 pm.  So I just pretended that wasn't my birthday because it totally sucked.  On Sunday Kevin and Emily set up a 30 point scavenger hunt for me.  Each spot had a clue leading to the next spot.  It was really cute and it was so much fun doing it with Emily.  At the end I had an envelope with cash so that I could pick out my birthday gift.

The next weekend Kevin and I threw ourselves a 30th birthday party with a Vegas/Casino Night theme.  We didn't get to celebrate Kevin's birthday back in October so we decided to have a joint bash.

When our guests arrived they received play cash to cash in for chips when the gaming started and an index card with a word on it.  If they heard that word said at any time during the night they were supposed to go to that person and say, "TABOO," and that person had to drink.

We had a bar and appetizers for everyone to enjoy until the Taco Truck arrived at 7:30.  There were tacos, burritos, quesadillas and more.  At 8:00 the dealers arrived and we played craps and blackjack for most of the night.  At the end of the gaming we had a live auction for 5 prizes.  The highest bidders (guests used their winnings from the night) got the prizes.  When you were bidding you didn't know what you were bidding on.  Some prizes were funny and "winning" prizes were lotto tickets.
It wouldn't be a party without some flip cup so after our auction we played girls vs. boys Survivor Flip Cup.  The girls won of course!!!  We finished the night with a little dancing.

Thank you to all who came to celebrate with us.  It means the world to us to have such wonderful family and friends.  You made the night extra special and fun. 
Also thank you so much to my mom for helping put on the party and being the best hostess thru the night!



First Shot of the Night

Shot #2
Let the Games Begin:

Round 2 of games- Survivor Flip Cup:

A little strategizing.  This is serious business!
My best friends bossy pants, lol!

Late Late Night Fun:

Photo Booth Fun: