Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hiya

Well, haven't we taken a nice little break?  The truth is, I've been a bit distracted lately.  I know you're all just DYING to be all caught up on life with the Brem fam, aren'tcha?  I know, I know.  I'll do my best.
Bear with me, there will be a story about poop at the end of this...

DISTRACTION #1 (And the very best one, of course!)

This little munchkin decided to make an early appearance, so all other plans and schedules for our lives were immediately thrown out the window and we hopped on planes and in cars and made our way to Tacoma for some cuddle time.  I want to put my face on those cheeks this very second.  

Hi Owen!!


I can't believe Mochie is a Mama...


Sigh...
You can read about Moch, Jon and Owen here.
And their amazing photography website is here.

DISTRACTION #2

Tacoma and all things Tacoma-ish and Tacoma food related.

I seriously think I forgot what a real Fall looks like.  Super pretty - even with all of those cars lining the streets.  When you live in Tacoma, it is a luxury if to have a driveway and many houses do not.  Tacoma is still way rad. :-) 



DISTRACTION #3 

Friends!!!

While in Tacoma we got to hang-out with and mooch-off of some of our bestest friends in the whole wide world.  

We even got to visit the pumpkin patch with the cute Gentile girls, cute Noelle and freaky looking Jude... 


And Jude got a new girlfriend...


And I came to grips with the sad reality that fall is way funner in the Pacific Northwest than it is in California.  Sorry, California.  You lose...


And this is my new favorite photo of my kids.
Jude may be cute, but he sure can be a stinker sometimes...




Look how pretty my friends are!  On the left is my sweet friend, Nikki.  She and her family are moving TO AFRICA this January to work with an organization called Serving In Mission (SIM) and I was SO freaking happy that I got to spend a teensy bit of time with her before she left. Plus, it was Kerri's (hottie on the right) birthday!  Can't believe that I got to celebrate it with her. (Missed you, Kari!)





This might be in my top 5 favorite photos ever.  
My friend, Carina (far right with the always awesome hair) and her husband, Nick (with half a head) are in the process of adopting a little girl (EEEEE!!).  They had a fundraiser pancake breakfast thing to help offset some adoption costs.  Thanks to the perfect timing of Owen's early arrival, we got to be there!  Also, it was Gavin's bff, Brice's (the laughing praying man in the middle) birthday, so we got to celebrate with him and his wife, Julie (hot & sassy standing the middle).  We attempted to rally our SIX children to take a decent photo.  I'm sure there's a more posed one floating around somewhere, 
but I am in love with this one.  



And finally, a poop story...
Today, while at Noelle's soccer practice, Jude and I were having a grand ol' time.  We kicked the soccer ball around the field, invented a game on the playground equipment and finally went for a little walk to collect leaves for an art project we are going to attempt tomorrow.  First of all, I told him to pick "pretty" leaves and he picked up a pile of brown leaf parts in a desperate attempt to end quickly and head back to the playground.  I was on to him though.  He threw the pile down and begrudgingly began to look for intact leaves.  I was searching for my own leaves when I heard Jude say, "Mommy, what's this?".  He was holding up a semi-hardened dog log.  I couldn't yell quickly enough, but finally irked out, "POOOOP" and as he dropped it, it splattered on the ground.  We then made a beeline for the hand-sanitizer.  The end.

He's lucky I like him so much...


 And now, you're all caught-up on the Brem's! You're welcome!


 *Apologies to all of our favorite people that we hung-out with and didn't take pictures of.  We stink.  You deserve to be blogged about too.  Your time will come...

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Happiest Place on Earth

In early September, we surprised our munchkins with a trip to Disneyland!  We LOVE Disneyland.  It is kinda embarrassing how much we love Disney.

We love it so much that we sometimes tear-up when we walk onto Main Street.

We love it so much that we make some Disneyland recipes for our holiday meals.

We love it so much that we spent our honeymoon at Disneyworld.

We love it so much that we have been there three times in the last 12 months.

We love it so much that we are writing a comprehensive blogpost citing all of our favorite Disney "do's and do not's" so we don't end up having to rewrite the same email to all of our friends that ask our advice before they head out on their own Disney adventures.

I think you get the point.

This last trip wasn't entirely just because we love Disney, but also because we love our dear friends, The Barker's and we planned this latest trip solely intending to hang-out with them as much as possible since they share our Disney addiction and we hadn't seen them in 2.5 years.  The Barker's are missionaries with YWAM and have been traveling the globe for the past couple of years sharing about Jesus and eating weird foods and digging worms out of their feet.  Don't worry, we made sure that they were "worm free" before we hung-out with them.

We surprised our kids with the announcement that we were going to Disneyland the morning of our trip. That was the hardest secret I've ever had to keep.  I am very bad a secret keeping, so please don't tell me your secrets.  I had kinda been prepping the kids for the surprise knowing that Jude had a bit of anxiety regarding ever going near Space Mountain since that time a couple of years ago when we tossed him on the ride and he pretty much curled-up into fetal position for the duration of it.  He still hasn't recovered, so I knew I had to do a little bit of leg work before the big surprise announcement.  I thought I had done a pretty good job, but still thought that there was a slight chance that Jude may have a strange reaction to the news.

He had a complete meltdown.  And luckily, I caught it on video.  I have watched this video no less than 37 times.  It is amazing.

Don't worry, he recovered fairly quickly after a bazillion promises that we would never make him go back on Space Mountain (even though we did try to bribe him and manipulate him while we were there and he started bawling his eyes out IN LINE for the ride and I had to make a quick getaway through a side exit door).  Anywho, besides that, Jude had a darn good time at Disneyland.

(Forgive the iphone pics, por favor!  I didn't wanna haul my camera around Disneyland, okay?)

SEE???  He's SMILING!!  (And squinting?  What is that face he's doing?)
This was right before we hopped in the car and headed South.


He looks happy to me!


Okay, he may look a bit freaky here, but it was short lived...


Princess lunch with the Barker girls!
And Noelle is a giant.


Me and Ronda


Noelle is officially a Jedi!!!
(I googled how to get your child picked for Jedi training school and got some great tips, PLUS I prayed no less than 7 times she would be picked.  It worked!)


Check out Noelle...


Not too shabby of a shot from an iphone, eh?


I'm embarrassed that this is the only group photo we have of us and the Barker clan, but it'll have to do!


And Jude lost his very first tooth while on Main Street waiting for the parade. 



 Jude likes Disneyland now.  I'm thankful that I didn't go through all the effort of blood work and DNA testing to make sure he wasn't switched at birth.
I'm convinced he's ours now.  :-)

Friday, October 7, 2011

Someone Thinks I'm Cool.

It's my lucky day!  My laundry is COMPLETELY done AND my friend Carina featured me on her blog,  a punk, a pumpkin and a peanut!

Plus, it's Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friday.  Everybody's lookin' forward to the weekend, weekend.

That song has been in my head all day.  AND it has been stuck in my head every single Friday since that one day that I saw it on youtube many, many months ago.

And now, it is probably stuck in your head too.

Hooray for Friday and clean laundry and my friend Carina!

Now, go see Carina's blog and see how funny I am or Jude might beat you up.

;-)



Thursday, October 6, 2011

I'm bald???!!!!

Our whole family was cracking-up last night at Noelle's first attempt at being a comic book author.  She's got talent, I tell you!


Let me translate this for you...

Square #1: "My sir, what a big hand you've got there."

Square #2: "ME???!! YOU are bald!!"

Square #3: "Ahhhhh!!!"


We have the same sense of humor.  Let's just say that Noelle's sense of humor is mature rather than my sense of humor being immature, okay?  Thanks for that.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The tooth-fairy

Jude lost his 2nd tooth tonight.  At bedtime I asked him to pray.  His prayer was this;

"Jesus, please help me go to sleep.  Please help the Tooth-Fairy to bring me a dollar.  Please help Mommy and Daddy feel all better.  In Jesus' name, Amen."

Oh, man.  Jude is never allowed to grow-up.  EVER.

The Best Banana Bread Ever - Unless You Go to SunBreak Cafe' in Auburn, WA

This is seriously our family's favorite banana bread.  The real "secret" is in the brown sugar crust.
Trust me, it is the BEST.  The only banana bread that I've ever had that I like better is from SunBreak Cafe' in Auburn, Washington.  If you have a chance to go there or live nearby - run there this very minute.  Order anything (it is all good) and get banana bread as your side.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  I'm considering hopping on a plane this morning solely for the purpose of stuffing my face with SunBreak's goodness.

Anyways, if you'd like to settle for the 2nd best banana bread in the world, go ahead and try this one.  ;-)
I love, love, love, love, love this banana bread.  Just sayin'.   Plus, it only takes about 6 or 7 minutes to throw together - which I also love.

Tip:
*I experimented with using the Trader Joe's organic sugar instead of regular white sugar.  It turned out good, but not great.  I'm sticking with the regular sugar for this recipe from now on.


1 1/2 cups flour (sometimes I use 50% white 50% wheat and it turns out fine)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2-3 large bananas
1 egg
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/3 cup(ish) brown sugar
Butter

Preheat oven 350 degrees.

Grease a loaf pan with butter and lightly sprinkle brown sugar in the bottom of the pan.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon and make a well in the center of the mixture.

In another bowl, combine bananas, egg, sugar and cooking oil.  When mixed, add "wet mixture" to "dry mixture" and stir just until it is all moistened.

Pour into loaf pan and sprinkle brown sugar on top of the batter.

*This is optional, but we've grown to love it.
Before putting the pan in the oven, top the center of the batter from end to end with a few pats of butter.  You probably won't regret it...hopefully.
It should look like this...



Bake for 50 minutes or until cooked through.




Eat it while it's hot - but not so hot that it burns the roof of your mouth!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Jude Is A Genius?

It's been a while since we posted some good Jude quotes and stories.  These past few days have provided ample material.

A few days ago, while homeschooing/begging Jude to finish his phonics worksheet he kept tipping the bench he was sitting on.
Me: "Please, stop tipping the bench."
Jude: "What happens when I do?"
Me: "You'll fall down."
Jude: "And hurt my buns?"
Me: "Yep."
Jude: "And my whole body?"
Me: "Yep."
Jude: "And I'll die?"
Me: "Um...no."

Also, while homeschooling/begging Jude to hurry up and finish:
Me: "If you finish your Spelling, Phonics and Journal then we can make some cookies!"
Jude: "Mommy, when I finish my Spelling, Phonics and Journal YOU can make me some cookies while I play the Wii."

That afternoon we went to the grocery store.  While standing in line to check-out, there was a man in front of us that had a couple of little holes in his t-shirt.  Jude reached up and stuck his finger right into one of the holes in the back of his shirt and then proceeded to ask the man why he had a hole in his shirt.  Gav and I scrambled, apologized and quickly and loudly pointed out that Jude had a hole in his jeans.  We are smooth like that.

On Saturday as we were driving to Noelle's soccer game, Jude asked me what the THX stood for that shows before a lot of movies.  He HATES the THX.  I told him I didn't know what it stood for.  He paused, then thoughtfully replied, "Tree house x-ray?"  Sure, buddy.

At church on Sunday morning both kids stayed with me and Gavin while we were in the high school service.  Right on schedule, Jude burped OUT LOUD during the message.  Then, during small group time he was asked who Jesus was and he replied, "A big strong guy."  We may have some work to do.

Last week during small group time, Jude was asked what he wanted to be when he grew-up.  At first, he said he wanted to be a missionary pilot.  Sa-weet.  Then he changed his mind and said, "Woody."  Dang-it, I was feeling so holy.  Well, at least it has improved from when he was 4 and when I asked him that same question, he replied, "A peanut butter and jelly sandwich."  We are moving up in the world, people!

Today, he asked me about a time when I was a little boy.  Err...

Noelle has recently taught Jude the fine art of naming every single toy that he owns.  He may not be the most creative, but he sure is consistent.  We now have a stuffed soccer ball name "Socky", a stuffed fish named "Fishy", another stuffed fish named "Blue Fishy" and (my favorite) a ball named "Ballsy".  Jude's real ballsy like that.  ;-)


Jude 
a.k.a.
Mr. Buns, Bunsy, Stinker, Stinkaroo, Buddy, Bud, Dude, Mister, 
Jude the Dude Who Likes His Food