Rawlins Family

Rawlins Family

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The boys finally have a decent room! I'm so excited! We spent the weekend painting - which, by the way, was a terrible task thanks to the heavily textured walls that we have. And we bought a new lofted bed to go in there over the queen bed Cameron was sleeping on. Needless to say he's very excited about his new up-up-up bed. Lastly, we took down the horrific mini-blinds that were in there and added curtains. We still need to get wood blinds but the curtains work for now.

Last week, Chase's mom, Tori, also gave us some of Chase's artwork from 1986 and '87. I'm going to re-mat it and hang it in there as well. There are some sweet pictures of dinosaurs (that are as big as volcanoes) and space ships. Perfect art for a boys room! I'll take pictures of them when I get them matted.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

And while I'm at it, I may as well share the best pancake recipe EVER! The trick with these is to HAND STIR the wet and dry ingredients together at the end and only right before you're ready to use the batter. Mix ONLY until everything is wet. It will be very lumpy but that means it's right.

Buttermilk Pancakes
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons white sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
3 eggs
1/3 cup butter, melted
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat together buttermilk, milk, eggs and melted butter. Keep the two mixtures separate until you are ready to cook.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. You can flick water across the surface and if it beads up and sizzles, it's ready!
Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, using a wooden spoon or fork to blend. Stir until it's just blended together. Do not over stir! Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/2 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot
Okay, folks. Consider this my good deed for the day.
This morning I stumbled across a recipe and I have to share it. It's called "Buttermilk Sauce" or buttermilk syrup. It's intended to go on german pancakes, but after tasting it we decided it can (and should) go on anything. Go in your kitchen and throw out the Aunt Jemima because you really won't be needing it if you make this stuff.
1 1/2 C. sugar
3/4 C. buttermilk
1/2 C. butter (I used less...about 1/3 C.)
2 T. honey
1 t. baking soda
2 t. vanilla extract
In a medium or large saucepan combine sugar, buttermilk, butter, corn syrup and baking soda. Boil for 7 minutes (I had to keep taking the pan on and off the heat because this bubbles up A LOT!). Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Serve warm.

And, you're welcome.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

One more thing...if you're not related to the Kilgore's but you're interested in matching faces and names, check out my sis-in-law's blog for a slide show with everyone's picture and name.

Okay, so I'm finally updating our blog from the family reunion trip! I've posted backwards so that things show up in chronological order...I hope it works.

Day 1: Saturday, August 4

We woke up at 6am to pack the cartop carrier and make the foil dinners! We decided to save some money (and have some fun) by camping along the way! So we packed the cooler and headed out. The boys were so ready to finally be leaving on "paycation" as Cameron calls it. I think it's a rather appropriate term...

About 12 minutes into the trip Cameron begins to ask if it's going to be a "long day." We assure him it is. The rest of the time is spent with him asking over and over again if he's going to sleep in a tent that night. The answer is the same every time and yet the question keeps being repeated. Aaahh, the joys of traveling with an almost 4 year-old.

By lunch time we're ready for the DVD player to come out and stop the madness. A big thank you goes out to Tori and Tony for lending it to us. It saved our sanity the entire time! We'll be borrowing it again, I'm sure. I, for one, would rather have Peter Pan pumping from the speakers than have to listen to the boys scream.

We made great time, thanks to the 75 mph speed limit in Kansas. We arrived at the campground at 6pm to find out that it was HOT and WINDY there. I expected this, so I was ready for it. We quickly got the tent up and put on our bathing suits. We took a dip in the pool while the foil dinners were cooking (i.e. burning) and then stayed in our wet suits for the remainder of the evening. I could have cared less that I was in a bathing suit in front of the entire KOA campground. I was comfortable and that's all that mattered.

After we ate dinner we decided to make s'mores (easily the best part of camping). Cameron insisted on roasting his own marshmallows. You can see the results were a little less than desirable. The boys had a great time just running all over the campground, though. I was confident that camping was, after all, the right decision.

Around 9pm the sun started to go down and we decided it was time for us to all put on our jammies and get into the tent for night-night time. I was convinced that Miles would just see us all laying down and head for his blanket for a good night's snooze. WRONG! By 10:30 it became apparent that all Miles wanted to do was run around inside of the tent using us as climbing equipment and practically breaking our noses in the process. Of course, this may have had something to do with the fact that our campsite was located DIRECTLY UNDER A STREET LIGHT THAT MADE IT APPEAR AS THOUGH IT WERE MID-DAY! We actually moved the tent about 4 times before realizing that there was no way to block out that much light. My question is this: WHO PUTS A GLARING STREET LIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF A TENT AREA?!

So anyway, we decided that in order for any of us to get any sleep we were going to have to erect the pack 'n play right there in the tent. It was a squeeze, but we made it work. And Miles did finally go to sleep. But guess who didn't? ME! That's right. I guess it's not the best idea to go sleeping on the ground when you're 6 months pregnant. I was so incredibly uncomfortable! I just laid there and laid there and listened to everyone else snoring. I would fall asleep for a few minutes here and there only to wake up because I was in pain! ARGH! I decided right then and there that there would be NO camping on the way home. Only hotels with beds for this girl!

Oh well, at least we had fun while the sun was shining, right?

Sunday, arrival day! We woke up EARLY thanks to our decision to camp. Actually Chase and I were awake before either of the boys. I was trying to think positively about going to church after having spent the night aching on the ground. I also couldn't really imagine myself getting fully dressed and ready for sacrament in the un-airconditioned KOA bathroom. So, with much guilt, I decided we were going to skip it and just pack up the car ASAP and head straight to CO! So glad I did. I was barely awake for the first few hours in the car...

Around 1:00 we hit Denver and knew we weren't far from our destination. However, the 30 miles over the mountain took us FOREVER! I didn't realize that Winter Park was on the other side of some huge mountain. So we had to go up it and then back down it on these super winding, steep roads.

When we got there I also found out that two things: First, we had NO cell phone reception! As the events planner I thought it was unacceptable that I couldn't actually be contacted by anyone. I was so frantic because, second, I realized that the condo's were not as easy to find as I had originally thought. Oops. Luckily I'm blessed with a relatively smart family who found their way there despite my cell phone absence.

As for the condos...well, let's just say I was really worried when we pulled up outside of them. Not pretty. But, I was able to breathe a sigh of relief after actually going through the front door. They were beautiful! And my condo - that we shared with my sister, Chrysta and her husband and two kids - was on the first floor overlooking a babbling brook. It was breath-taking! Just walk out onto the deck and take three steps down and you're right there. Fantastic! And the weather was amazing! At 9100 feet the air stays pretty comfortable even in August. I don't think it even hit 80 the whole time we were there. After WaKeeney, KS I was in heaven.

The best part was as people were all arriving. It was so fun to get their first but we had to endure all of the anticipation as we waited for people to join us! Luckily Sara and Jerry got there right away so we had some immediate company. It was just so much fun! I'm gushing, I know...I just seriously love my family!

Monday was the organizational day. We hit the grocery store early, which wore us all out and we decided to just hang out at the condos and let the kids play instead of trying to do any outings. So glad we did. It was really nice to just chill after two days of driving! The kids were just thrilled to be together.

After dinner at my condo a couple of the more restless people decided to go hike the mountain immediately behind our condo. On the way back they decided to take a shortcut through the stream right to our back door. Bird went first, Taylor and Jerry came second (with Jerry holding Tay's hand for dear life lest she slip and fall because all 25 pounds of her would have surely been washed clear down the mountain), and then came Lylla. Oh Lylla. Just wait for the video that I'm going to post. It was priceless. For someone so strong, lithe and coordinated, it was the LEAST graceful thing I've seen in, well, forever. But thankfully her camera never fell in the water.
Tuesday was supposed to be our day to take a family hike. We were going to set out once the kids got up from naps, but the weather won and we ended up staying home. It was good because Sam and Kathryn arrived mid-afternoon (and K will admit that her shoes really weren't suitable for hiking, anyway:). So we got to chat and catch up with them while the rain subsided. At dinner time we all headed for the pavillion/playground area to grill. Mike suprised us all by manning the grill the entire time. And I know why, because he's awesome with a grill. Alyssa informed us that they grill at least twice a week and Mike loves to feed people. And feed he did. Thanks, Mike!
Oh, I should add that Chase woke up Tuesday morning, looked outside to see that it was rainy and cold and then decided, "I should go take a dip in the stream." And he did. I'll post the video. It's ridiculous. That stream was COLD!
Wednesday was WHITE WATER RAFTING DAY! I have no pictures because I was home with Chrysta, the grandma's and the kids. I did hear that it was fun, though. For me the highlight of the day was hanging out with Grandma Marilyn. Man, that lady is funny. I got to hear some seriously great stories while I was taking her back to her hotel room. Sweeeeeet!
Wednesday also brought the arrival of Scott, Christy and their clan! Finally! Scott, who is a naval aviator apparently had some mission to complete with kept delaying his departure for the vacation. We were SO HAPPY when they finally joined us. And the cousins couldn't contain their joy at the arrival of Zach and Ty. At one point I was forcing Cameron to sit down and partake of sustenance and he looked over at Zach and said, "I'm so happy he's here." Awww...

Thursday was golf day for the boys and the ladies started the day by taking the kids for a hike. Afterwards we played on the playground and then went out for lunch sans kiddos (thank heaven for grandma's). Note: these are not pictures from Thursday, just random ones I have. For some reason I have no pictures from Wednesday or Thursday...weird.

In the second picture is (from left) Hudson, Gaby and Ty. My mom brought her keyboard so she could keep practicing while she's on the road and the kids LOVED it!

Friday we didn't have too much planned. Sam, Jerry and Ryan decided to go downhill mountain biking. Basically what happened was they took their bikes to the ski lifts and took the lifts to the top of the mountain where they turned around and bombed down the hill on teeny-tiny little paths that almost guaranteed death to the untrained. Jerry left half of his skin on the mountain and Sam busted his bike. Ryan, amazingly, escaped unscathed.

While they were abusing their bodies on THAT part of the mountain, Alyssa, Mike, Bird and Taylor hit the Alpine Slide. Basically it's a luge course down the mountain. They put you on a little cart, show you the accelerator and brake and off you go. Sounds fun, right? Hmmm...not so much. Let's just say that Alyssa had a hard time distinguishing the brake and the accelerator and ended up flying off the slide, again, leaving half of her skin on the mountain. Sweet.

After the used and abused returned the ladies headed out for some shopping. Great restraint was shown by all in the shoe store, much to the delight of the husbands.

The day ended with a yummy breakfast-for-dinner dinner followed by the Iron Chef Chocolate challenge. The teams were supposed to be by condo and mom and dad and grandma's were supposed to be the judges. We ended up with only two dishes, though, because Sara's chocolate fantastic-ness got a little "alititude-y" and wouldn't bake properly. The world just isn't right when you're forced to miss out on any of Sara's cooking. But, we did end up enjoying the two dishes served, a chocolate trifle and some mint chocolate ball things. And if that wasn't enough food for ya, we ordered sushi as an after-dinner snack (about an hour later...).

Saturday was the last day of the reunion. SO sad! We had to check out at 10am, so we were grateful for Miles waking us up early. We had a kitchen to clean! Once we were all cleaned up and packed up we headed to the local park with those who weren't flying or weren't on a schedule. We let the kids play for awhile before heading out for some German food. I wasn't a fan, but I think Chrysta and Karl and their crew were very at home there. Here are some pictures of us driving out of the deadly canyon...

We made it to WaKeeney, KS that night and as we were driving I-70 through Kansas we kept seeing these enormous fields of sunflower seeds! It was gorgeous. I never really thought about them as a "crop" before, but I guess we use them for all sorts of things. Sunflower seeds,


On Thursday I had my 24 week check up and afterwards we went over to the hospital to visit Nana Rawlins who happens to work in the post-partum unit as a mother-baby nurse. When we got there she was taking us around and introducing us to the other nurses. Since I had both kids with me we were getting lots of cute comments and the ladies were loving them. One lady leaned down to Cam's level and was trying to talk to him when all of the sudden, BAM, he flips her the bird - like, right in her face - and says, "I have an owie on my finger." Yes, he did have the slightest abrasion on the side of his middle finger, but did he really need to pull that out of nowhere? I had the HARDEST time not bursting out laughing (because you know if you laugh then you'll never see the end of that middle finger...). It was just a nice moment from our day. The kind lady was really sweet about it. Here's a picture of Cam's owie.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Oh LYYYYYYYYYYYYYYLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLAAAAA! I can't wait to SEEEEEEEEEEEEE YOU! That's some mighty fine spandex and I thought the WHOLE family (plus every single one of my friends - and any other creepy people who google the word "spandex") would like to see you in it. An extra big thanks goes out to Bird who had this pic on her facebook page. So glad I checked THAT today! In the words of Lylla herself, "MWAH HA HA!