Make these this weekend

What am I bossing you about now? These Cinnamon Roll Waffles.

I die. Super, super simple and I felt like I was giving the boys such a treat. And a huge dose of sugar that I had to deal with for about an hour, but worth it. Oh the deliciousness!

I am going to type out the recipe because it is very complicated and I don’t want you to have to do all that clicking through the links.

1. Open can of store bought cinnamon rolls
2. Spray waffles iron with cooking spray
3. Place 4 cinnamon rolls on a preheated waffle iron and close to cook.
4. Pour icing from store bought rolls onto waffles
5. Write Kinsey a thank you email for the excellent ratio of cinnamon, dough and icing.

Don’t worry he actually did like them, he just insists on making this face all. the. time.

First Ride

Back when the weather was a bit warmer I realized that James was big enough for our bike carrier. Which meant he needed a helmet to go with it. Turns out baby helmet is not that easy to find so I was pretty excited to spot this construction themed one.

Guess who was less than excited.

But guess whose mom thought it was super funny that it squished his face like that.

And they are off!

They made it about half the block when Zach got tired and wanted to turn around. It could have been James’ one year shirt that he is wearing as an almost four year old.

A wolf could totally blow it down

For James’ birthday his Ollie and Grandpa Vince brought him a cardboard playhouse (also owned by Mason Disicks) which the boys quickly became enamored with. Zach stores all his chairs and toys in there and James enjoys aggressively batting the door open and crawling inside.Now that he can walk he aggressively opens the door and walks inside. It is mildly funny as he doesn’t even have to bend down to get inside. It is his perfect size.

I wrote “James and Zach ONLY” on the door so I refuse to go in. Sweet Auntie Tami goes in there but not me. It smells and is dirty. I can stay outside and experience that.

But I do pop my head in the windows and doors scaring the two little boys inside which results in peals of laughter and screaming. Oh the joys of childhood.

Well hello there serious..

That Pumpkin is Grumpy

For the first time this year we carved a pumpkin. I personally wanted to avoid it one more year given the mess that I certainly would have to clean up. But Alex was determined to carve one this year so out we trekked to a pumpkin patch Whole Foods to pick just the right pumpkin the only one without mold on it. That is what you get for buying a pumpkin the Saturday before Halloween.

Zach was very excited to scoop out the seeds talking the entire time about how they did this at his school.
Great, you have done it – we get it, live in the moment Zachary!

James was doing this the entire time:

Still waving the carrot bat around:

And the final pumpkin. Zach insisted that it had eyebrows…not a complete fail but I am pretty sure the ladies at Nail Salon would disapprove.

Can we also discuss the hodgepodge of pumpkins on my front porch this year? Do you see the little one on the right trying to distance himself from the disaster on the left? We have no fewer than 4:
1. Painted one when I was feeling like Zach and I should be creative
2. Fake one that obviously looks the best but whose cap has been removed by a grumpy baby in an attempt to burn himself on the candle.
3. Random pumpkin purchased thinking Zach had to take one to school. Nope. Just for our viewing pleasure.
4. And finally grumpy pumpkin.

For all my sarcasm it actually was a really nice family evening. Zach was so proud of the pumpkin and took great pride in getting it all set up with the candle. Then he and Alex played “soccer” in the front yard until the mosquitoes took over. Even James had a good time, though you would not know it from his signature James face.

He doesn’t care that they are dirty

In the past month we have noticed James’ insistence on doing whatever Zachary is doing at the moment keeps growing. If Zach eats a green bean; James will eat a green bean. If Zach is brushing his teeth; you better get James his toothbrush for those 6 teeth STAT.

However, James is also obsessed with wearing his own shoes and socks. If you put on your shoes or he just sees his, he brings them to you.

So I didn’t really put two and two together to realize when James brought me a pair of Zach’s socks while we were playing that Zach had on the same pair. Granted, James’ were from the day before but guess who was having none of me trying to switch them out for clean ones. Shrill screaming started and I realized I didn’t care that much.

I have no clue what is going on in all these photos. Something with a hula hoop, pillows and a piece of a race car track.

In your mouth – or on your face

That title sounds a wee bit dirty, but it was all I could think of to describe my children eating spaghetti. Why is that kids love that food yet it is so incredibly messy? Event the baby does not mind that he only can get 1-2 strands at a time, they love it.

I am as shocked as you that they are wearing shirts.

Why is she friends with me

That is a very valid question for many of my friends, but especially my-friend-Sonia. I seem to only call her my-friend-Sonia like people don’t’ know by now that I have a friend named Sonia and she knows everything. And gives excellent advice. And knows when I am being totally cra-cra.

Anyway, when I was planning James’ party I had the excellent idea to give away Make Your Own Ice Cream packs complete with wooden spoon, ice cream cup and recipe. Adorable, right?

It was adorable until I realized I should have ordered the cups with lids online as I was having trouble finding them. 

LiTTLe WHiTe PaPeR ICe CReaM CUPS-4oz with Diy printables CLeaR DoMe LiDS and wood taster spoons-Ice Cream-Showers-Weddings-10ct

 This was totally my vision. Not going to happen. Insert hyperventilation here.

Which is where my-friend-Sonia comes in. I was going on and on and on about my terrible misfortune when she suggested that I just “put them in a bag”.

If looks could kill she would be dead.

I am sorry, do I LOOK like someone who would just put something that darling into a bag?  Seriously. It was like she didn’t even know me. She immediately begin laughing and apologizing when I turned on my heel and left.

After more research and visiting all craft stores in the greater Houston area this is I ended up with:

Yep, it’s a bag. Granted, a bag with a cute tag and sticker that matched the invite, tied with the ever so trendy bakers twine and filled with the fixings for ice cream, a wooden spoon and two ice cream cones.

But still…I do owe her an apology. Sigh. I am really a piece of work sometimes.

I am Smitten

Do you read the blog, Smitten Kitchen? If not you should; right now. I will wait.

I love Deb. First I love that her name is Deb and second I love that everything she makes is delicious. While that may seem just like another one of my sweeping statements, it is also the truth. Now, some of her items are a bit out there, I will give you that. For example I have no desire or time to make Butternut Squash Salad with Farro and Pepitas, mainly because I don’t know what those last two things are.

BUT I have made a variety of her more normal dishes and my favorite is Buttermilk Roast Chicken. It is my go-to chicken dish on busy weeks. All you do is mix sugar, salt, pepper, garlic and paprika into buttermilk pour it over chicken, let soak and bake.

Delicious and so, so easy.

buttermilk roast chicken, round 1 
adapted only minimally from Smitten Kitchen

2 cups buttermilk (or 2 cups regular milk with 1 tsp white vinegar, wait 5 minutes then use)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon table salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika, plus extra for sprinkling
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 1/2 to 3 pounds chicken parts (we used all legs)*
Drizzle of olive oil
Flaked or coarse sea salt, to finish

Whisk buttermilk with garlic, table salt, sugar, paprika and lots of freshly ground black pepper in a bowl. Place chicken parts in a gallon-sized freezer bag (or lidded container) and pour buttermilk brine over them, then swish it around so that all parts are covered.
Refrigerate for at least 2 but preferably 24 and up to 48 hours. (This is key. Don’t try to forget and make it the same day. Mix it all up on Sunday and bake it after work Tuesday. Or have your babysitter do it like I do.)

When ready to roast, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking dish with foil (totally necessary – super easy clean up)
Remove chicken from buttermilk brine and arrange in dish. Drizzle lightly with olive oil, then sprinkle with additional paprika and sea salt to taste.
Roast for 30 minutes (for legs; approximately 35 to 40 for breasts), until brown and a bit scorched in spots. Serve immediately or later. It is great reheated and in lunches. 

* I have tried it with the skin on and skin removed. Alex and I like it better with the skin off, but when I am lazy I leave it on and remove it before I serve it/eat it.

2 out of 3

Alex has been getting home earlier as of late and all of us are glad to see him. The boys are glad as the wrestling and sword fighting can begin. I am glad as the wrestling and sword fighting can begin and I can slink off and hide.
I don’t even know how this reading time happened  They are in our living room (where we never sit), James is not wearing a shirt (incredibly odd in our house) but is apparenlty wearing hot pants and Alex looks like he has not showered in days. My little family in all their glory.

Scenes from a party

Way back in July when my baby turned one I threw a party. Remember? In typical Kinsey fashion I was very proud of myself and made my dad take excessive photos of the decorations because I know everyone would just be dying to see.

You are welcome.

Naturally the idea was spawned from Pinterest and my Granny making cupcakes in ice cream cones. I actually did not go THAT overboard, but we had fruit in ice cream cones, rice crispys shaped like popsicles and on sticks (technically a total fail as the heat kept melting the marshmallow) and wooden spoons.

How did this photo of a child get in here? 
Oh yes, to show that Caroline was a HUGE fan of my wooden spoons and ice cream cups. 
Isn’t she darling loving my theme?

And this photo I just liked of three dads “watching” the children. At least Matt was holding a child while drinking. Wait…that might make him the bad guy.