Thursday, February 20, 2014

More New Books!

A few more titles coming to shelves here soon. The first few need no explanation, if you are at all up on children's literature:
How to Betray a Dragon's Hero (How to Train Your Dragon Series #11)
Big Nate: I Can't Take It!
Extreme Babymouse (Babymouse Series #17)
This one I just liked because I know a very nice young man named Ezra:
The Wrath of Ezra
Most of the time, he doesn't look at all like that, though.
Baby Bear Counts One
Because Miss Amanda recommended it, and Miss Amanda is never wrong.
Mustache Baby
Because - cuteness!!
Llama Llama and the Bully Goat
Another no-brainer.
These are just a sampling of what we got in. I have finished the actual cataloguing, now I just need to do a couple more things to them before I send them on to processing - expect them on the shelves here in a day or two - or, you may find them already at your local library!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

New Books!

Thanks to a local entity pulling its funding from the library, we have been unable to order any new materials at all for a few months. We finally got the go-ahead for small orders this month, and let me tell you, it was not easy to pare down my box of order cards to the few most imnportant! Today, however, we saw that happy brown truck pull up with boxes from our distributor. A few of the juvenile selections that will soon be available for checkout:
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place, Book 4: The Interrupted Tale
I absolutely love this series - I get it first!
Cassandra the Lucky (Goddess Girls Series #12)
Not to my personal taste, but also a popular series. I know several young ladies who will be happy to see this one.
This one will have to go home with me soon as well - perfect as we start our Spring clean-up and planting.
On a Beam of Light: A Story of Albert Einstein
I heart Albert.
Easter Sweets and Treats
I heart cookbooks, too.
Whatever After #4: Dream On
This one has a hold request, and it hasn't even been processed yet.
Dragonbreath #9: The Case of the Toxic Mutants
We got several Dragonbreath volumes in - very popular series, as are:
Lunch Lady and the Schoolwide Scuffle: Lunch Lady and the Schoolwide Scuffle
(two new volumes)
High Time for Heroes (Magic Tree House Series #51)
There, it's in, stop bugging me!
More to come! Some day I hope to actually have time to read these...

Saturday, February 15, 2014

What We Love

I was very happy to have Valentine's Day off this year - I always seem to end up working, and it has been a while since we had a 'fun day', so this worked out well. Unfortunately, Daddy and M. had to be out of town - after seeing pictures and videos on Facebook, however, they may have felt lucky to have escaped the mayhem.
To plan for the day, I focused on things we love: glitter, and messes. We started by thinking of others, though:
The critters,

and the family. Each person's cookie was marked with his or her initial before S. and L. decorated it.
This was M.'s, can't you tell? I guess I'm not the only person heavy-handed with toppings! Daddy and M. took theirs on their trip, and the sugar rush lasted through the entire state of Texas.

Mmmmmm, sugar!
Next up: rock painting.
"Look Mommy, I made a happy face!"

Um...if you say so, son.

Nothing says Valentine's Day like a spooky ghost!

Did I mention someone was a bit heavy handed?

Okay, so now the table (and kids) are a mess. Did you know, if you put a little bit of dish soap, and a little bit of water in a blender and turn it on, you get a LOT of foam?

Who was I kidding with this tub, anyway?

Yep. Oh, better move the salt...

Yeah, the tub was kind of pointless.

I...have no idea.

Fortunately, Grandma stopped by about this time, with my 8mo granddaughter G. in tow. I thought G. was going to get whiplash from trying to look in every direction at once. Mean old Grandma wouldn't let G. get down and play (in her pretty new outfit), but she did supervise a thorough rinsing in the tub while I mopped up the dining room. The kids are still a bit pinkish, but my table and floors were sparkling clean - momentarily.
Time for a snack! We had some shredded zucchini left from Bountiful Baskets, so I made zucchini 'pancakes' with pink sour cream:
More crafts, then - a commercial kit I picked up last year, when everything was 90% off. More glitter!
The table was no longer sparkling clean, but it was definitely still sparkling.
Lunch and nap time, during which I grabbed the leftovers of the Valentines we had bought for C.'s class, and hid them around the house. After naps, we picked C. up at school, played on the playground for a while, then came home and had a scavenger hunt for them.
The candy inside turned out to be ridiculously hard, but we're flexible. We can do patterning with the candy and just glue it to paper, and the plastic hearts will see many reincarnations, I'm sure!
Can't have C. missing all the mess, time for glitter slime! There are many slime recipes out there. I wanted to use the one with liquid starch, but every single store in town is out. Highly bizarre. Instead, we mixed:
6 oz. glitter glue
5 oz. clear glue
3 cups water
and added about 3T Borax in 1 cup warm water. The kids mixed it up by hand...
...and then experimented for a while.

As gooky as it looks, it's actually pretty easy to pick up again. After they had their fill, I put it in an airtight container to play with again later.
We had a blast, but by this time, I was ready for a little order. Fortunately, the kids were ready to just plain play, so I was able to get dinner together and spend some cuddle time with Baby S., who had had enough of watching from the sidelines. We finished out the evening with a movie, and ate the rest of our very-colorful heart cookies. 
This is not a normal day off for us - I don't think we have EVER had this many activities back to back. The kids have missed out a bit with all the new-baby-craziness, though, and have been super about it, so I was determined to make this one day all about them. I hope you had a fantastic day with loved ones as well - and, if not, in the words of Cheap Otter, "If you don’t have anyone to smooch with, don’t get discouraged. Watch “Must Love Dogs” or “You Got Mail” and eat some chips and salsa…."
Hmm...I think I just figured out my bedtime snack...

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Bountiful Baskets Start to Finish, Part 4 - More Cooking!

First up today: the giant mushrooms we got in a previous basket. I had used a few, but still had a dozen or so. I looked at several different recipes for stuffed mushrooms, and cobbled together the parts I liked.
First stop: bacon! If I put bacon on cat food, people in my house would eat it. It's kind of like adding sequins to any craft project at the library - instant hit. I like to cut it up before I fry it, rather than crumbling afterward.
I cooked 2 pounds, but some went into turnip greens, Daddy ate some, a handful was saved for lunch, Daddy ate some, the kids had a few pieces, and Daddy ate some. So...maybe half a pound went into this.
Next I pulled the stems from the mushrooms and chopped them, then sautéed with minced garlic, and finely chopped onion.

Then I forgot to take a picture until I had already tossed it all in the blender, along with the bacon.
I toasted a piece of sourdough bread and shredded it, and added a package of cream cheese and one of crumbled blue cheese.

I just needed everything chopped up, which was good, because the cream cheese kept sticking to the sides and kept everything from mixing. I would suggest blending everything else together, then mixing in the cream cheese.

I finally took the blades out and stirred it up with a spoon.
Next just stuff the mushroom caps to overflowing. They don't have to look pretty - they're mushrooms! Mushrooms are ugly! Embrace it!

Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes. Inhale deeply and try to fend off drooling family members.

When do I get some?
 I moved Baby S.'s high chair into the kitchen, and he supervised the cooking today.

Next up were apple muffins with the apples that were getting to be past their prime. Except I couldn't find my tried-and-true apple muffin recipe. So, I faked it, and ended up with something completely different anyway.

Start with any basic fruit muffin recipe you can find on line. Change the white sugar to brown.

Because brown sugar is yummy.
Toss in a handful of zucchini, because you still have some left over from the bread in yesterday's post.

Peel and chop your apples.

Chop up some strawberries, because you suddenly have a ton.

If you are assigned to compost duty, make sure you wear appropriate attire, such as your best dress.

Fold fruit in gently, and pour into muffin papers left over from you Hello Kitty birthday party. Top with cinnamon sugar, and one blackberry each.

Bake for as long as it takes for the baby to finish nursing, and you to remember that you have muffins in the oven.

And for your daughter to decide to use her hand lotion as hair gel.

Exactly the right amount of time!

These three won't fit in the muffin carrier, so you will have to eat them.

Supper consisted of turnip greens with the aforementioned bacon, the mushrooms, and a salad with lots of BB veggies. Here, S. of the lotioned hair is discovering sugar snap peas.

That pretty much says it all! The kids weren't sure about the mushrooms, although L. scooped out all his filling and ate it. Daddy made up for their ambivalence - there were no leftovers.