Monday, November 16, 2009

Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies (did you ever think I'd post it?)

So sorry for the wait...I know at least two people out there are desperate for this recipe, which really is a great alternative to anything chocolate and which my children actually do eat. In fact, we sometimes call these breakfast cookies because of the oatmeal. Hey, whatever works!

Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups oats
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 2/3 cups cinnamon chips (10oz bag)
3/4 cup raisins

Heat oven to 375 F. Beat butter and sugars until grainy, add eggs and vanilla; beat until fluffy. Combine flour and baking soda; add to the butter mixture and beat well. Stir in oats, cinnamon chips, and raisins. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes at 375 F. Let cool on cookie sheet one minute, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely before storing in airtight container at room temperature. Makes about 4 dozen, unless you eat alot of dough! This recipe is from Hershey's Kitchens.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Like a Good Neighbor

State Farm has really been incredible throughout this ordeal. We now have a project manager and a whole team of people who are fixing this mess in our backyard. Today we met with the pool company in Pleasanton who is going to redo the pool, fire pit, seatwall, and stairs. The adjuster came from LA and made a formal estimate of the damages. This was compared to the general contractors list and submitted to State Farm. A few days later I received a giant check in the mail! In the beginning I thought they had no where to go but down because Ken Bullock's response was so great. But their level of service has continued to be incredible! If you are looking for a great insurance company that actually likes to show you how they can be a good neighbor, look no further than State Farm!
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Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Halloween 2009

This year, I was "that mom". The one who failed to plan and get everything ready ahead of time. The one who didn't take the kids to the pumpkin patch. The one who didn't even buy or carve pumpkins! The one who missed the elementary parade while making Monkey Bread and the last of 6 batches of cookies (because two kids had day of the dead celebrations in Spanish, Ryan's class needed cookies for their party, and the Save Darfur Club was having a bake sale). Yes, I was that mom who left the kids to fend for themselves after one afternoon of costume shopping with too many friends crammed in the van. And, guess what? My kids aren't scarred for life. They actually had the best (and easiest) costumes this year and they made them by themselves. After much drama, Alaina and 4 friends were teenage mutant ninja turtles. They cut their own turtle shells out of cardboard, painted them and strapped them on their backs with yarn. They wore plain green t-shirts (2 for $5 at Michael's) with karate belts and eye masks.
Ryan let his buddy be the quarterback and drew his own picture of a person running on the back of his shirt to be a running back (after we spent two hours ironing on the football lettering).
Becca cut out an 'm' that I drew for her and we hot glued it on a red shirt to make an m&m.
Andy made his own pacman costume. He'd been talking about it for weeks and I kind of thought it would go away. I was that mom. Thinking he'd change his mind and go as something that would actually fit in the van. He spent a few hours cutting and taping a dishwasher box and transformed it into an arcade game shape. He covered it with black construction paper and modge podge, then he cut out blinky, inky, pinky, and bashful, and a big pacman. He punched out circles to gobble up and glued everything together. Then he found a foam ball and colored it red to make the joystick and glued on the controls.
I wore my old cruella costume that I made 8 years ago and found in the Halloween box in the garage. I must say it was much cuter when Ryan, Becca, and Alaina were my dalmation puppies. This year I just looked like an old lady in a cape.
And Dave...well Dave deviated from the traditional hat costume and wore my brothers old hockey jersey. At least he's always a good sport.
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